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Warhead Performance Calculations for Threat Hazard Assessment

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Conference paper

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Measurements of warhead performance are expensive. The results are strongly dependent on details of warhead design, necessary economies at the measurement facility, and round-to-round variations. Therefore it is essential to have a capability to make warhead performance predictions in the earliest phases of weapon preliminary design. Methods presented here for predicting warhead performance, applicable for all levels of design, are derived from Victor Technologys prior experience in the assessment of warhead performance and are also useful for predicting fragment threats in hazard assessments. Although these methods are formally simple, they represent significant improvements over more simplistic methods often used. The term warhead performance encompasses the terminal effects phase of munitions operational requirements. In general, this includes 1 fragment size distribution, spatial distribution, velocity, and fragment effects on specific targets, and 2 blast over-pressure, impulse, and their effects on specific targets. For specialized warheads, there are other performance parameters for example Penetrator warheads must be able to perforate specified thicknesses of structural materials without preliminary initiation, structural failure, or other functional degradation Shaped-charge warheads must produce jets conforming to design requirements for penetration of specific thicknesses of armor, and Underwater warheads must produce energetic gas bubbles that transfer energy to a water shock wave a similar energy requirement exists for some penetrator warheads whose major damage mechanism is rapid pressure generation in interior ship or bunker compartments. Shaped charge design is a highly specialized field not represented in this paper, however Chanteret summarized simple design methods in a recent paper. 44

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  • Ammunition and Explosives

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