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An Experimental Study to Determine the Effects of Repetitive Sonic Booms on Glass Breakage

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Final rept.

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A pneumatic pistonphone simulator, developed by Wyle Laboratories, was used under the present contract to experimentally determine damage potential to single strength glass specimens when exposed to repetitive sonic booms. The glass specimen dimensions were typically 48 inch x 48 inch x 332 inch. In these experiments, particular emphasis was placed on the cumulative damage from a large number of booms. Preliminary static strength tests were conducted on two sizes of new previously unused single strength glass to determine mean values and probability distributions of incipient failure pressures, and a few such tests were also conducted for used scratched and weathered glass specimens. As a by-product, these tests yielded data regarding nonlinear stiffness characteristics of glass panes and the effects of boundary conditions on this stiffness. Although the test data are limited, results indicate that sonic boom overpressures required to cause incipient failure are nearly comparable to static failure pressures, and the probability of glass failure at realistic sonic boom overpressures is quite small for properly mounted new glass. Further experiments will be required to validate and extend these results. A preliminary glass neighborhood survey was conducted to determine breakage rates under natural environments however, because of the small sample size, the glass breakage statistics obtained were of limited value in formulating a realistic breakage probability model. A more comprehensive, national glass neighborhood survey is required.

Subject Categories:

  • Ceramics, Refractories and Glass
  • Acoustics

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