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In this work, an experimental and numerical analysis of the martensitic transformation in AISI 304 steel sheets subjected to perforation by conical and hemispherical projectiles is conducted. Experiments are performed using a pneumatic gas gun for with the impact velocities in the range of 35 m/s < V-0 < 200 m/s. Two target thicknesses are examined, t(1) = 0.5 mm and t(2) = 1.0 mm. The experimental setup enabled the determination of the impact velocity, the residual velocity and the failure mode of the steel sheets. The effect of the projectile nose shape on the target's capacity for energy absorption is evaluated. Moreover, martensite is detected in all the impacted samples, and the role played by the projectile nose shape on the transformation is highlighted. A three-dimensional model is developed in ABAQUS/Explicit to simulate the perforation tests. The material is defined via the constitutive model developed by Zaera et al. (2012) to describe the strain-induced martensitic transformation occurring in metastable austenitic steels at high strain rates. The finite element results are compared with the experimental evidence, and satisfactory matching is observed over the entire range of impact velocities tested and for both projectile configurations and target thicknesses considered. The numerical model succeeds in describing the perforation mechanisms associated with each projectile-target configuration analyzed. The roles played by impact velocity, target thickness and projectile nose shape on the martensitic transformation are properly captured.