PREDICTIONS OF UNDERWATER EXPLOSION PHENOMENA
NAVAL ORDNANCE LAB WHITE OAK MD
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A survey of the various phases of calculations which led to the quantitative prediction of the important underwater explosion parameters for Operation Wigwam is presented. The analysis of the explosion phenomena requires a knowledge of the thermodynamic properties of water over an extremely wide pressure range, i.e., from infinity down to the low pressures of an acoustic wave. No equation of state is known which satisfactorily covers this range therefore five separate pressure ranges were considered. For extremely high pressures the solution of the point blast problem of Taylor is applicable. For lower pres sures the three partial differential equations of the spherical fluid motion were integrated. The method was not tractable below a shock pressure of about 450,000 psi corresponding to a shock radius of 81 ft in Operation Wigwam . The energy dissipation at the front of the intense shock wave from a point explosion produces the heat which vaporizes the water and forms a steam filled cavity. This bubble pulsates in a manner similar to that observed for bubbles produced by high explosives. The analysis yielded the maximum bubble radius and the period of the first pulsation as well as the total mass of water evaporated up to the moment of the first bubble maximum.
- Nuclear Physics and Elementary Particle Physics