Detonation Stability and Its Relation to the Transverse Wave Structure of Detonation.
BALLISTIC RESEARCH LABS ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND MD
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It has been previously shown that steady state overdriven detonations, which are piston supported, may be unstable and that in such cases the velocity of the detonation front oscillates in a regular manner. Here it is shown that unsupported detonations are also unstable and that the detonation velocity may undergo regular or irregular oscillations. The phenomena was studied with a method of characteristics code which computed the response on an initially overdriven detonation as it was overtaken by a rarefaction. The response depended on the heat capacity ratio of the gas, the activation energy of the reaction, and the form of the chemical kinetics. It is shown that the relative position of maximum heat releases within the reaction zone determines the existence of stability or instability. A qualitative explanation for instability is deduced and the phenomena is related to the transverse wave structure of detonations. Author