SCALING THE EFFECTS OF AIR BLAST ON TYPICAL TARGETS
JOHNS HOPKINS UNIV LAUREL MD APPLIED PHYSICS LAB
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The interactions between shock waves, produced in air by detonation of explosives, and specific targets which they can destroy by air blast are described. A mathematical analysis is used which relates weights of explosive or yields of nuclear devices to the distances at which they can cause lethal damage over the entire range of blasts from a few pounds of conventional high explosive to kilotons or megatons of nuclear blast. Effects at sea level and higher altitudes are examined. In the analysis, typical targets are defined by two parameters for which specific numerical values can be established. Shock waves produced by detonation of specific explosives are similarly defined in mathematical terms which relate characteristics of the explosive to the ambient atmosphere. A dimensionless scaling parameter relating a shock wave parameter to a target parameter is the key to the scaling relationships derived.