Laboratory Studies of Containment in Underground Nuclear Tests.
Final rept. 16 Nov 77-31 Jan 79,
SRI INTERNATIONAL MENLO PARK CA
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As part of the DNA stemming and containment program for underground nuclear testing, laboratory studies were performed to further develop and apply experimental techniques for assessing the effects on containment of the residual stress field surrounding an exploded cavity. A comparison of hydrofracture pressures for exploded and unexploded cavities revealed the existence of this stress field. Experimental parameter studies were conducted to provide an understanding of the mechanisms controlling containment. Sensors were developed to generate quantitative estimates of crack growth, fluid motion, and the states of stress and strain in the region surrounding a cavity during hydrofracture. The data generated provide results suitable for development of new containment theories as well as for correlation with predictions of existing computer codes. Hydrofracture pressure records were simulated by applying classical fracture mechanics theory.