Safety Window Shield to Protect Against External Explosions
NAVAL CIVIL ENGINEERING LAB PORT HUENEME CA
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This paper describes the conceptual design, predicted performance, and development plan for a new design concept being developed by the Naval Civil Engineering Laboratory for safety windows in both new and existing buildings. The concept, named the safety window shield, protects the building interior against effects from accidental explosions outside the building, including blast overpressures, fragments, and debris. Instead of transferring window loads to the exterior wall, the shield transfers the applied window loads to the wall-ceiling and wall-floor joints where the building is inherently strong. This vastly reduces collateral building damage and the probability of structural collapse from an explosion. The acquisition, installation, and maintenance costs make the shield an economical, reliable, and effective way to increase the safety of personnel in buildings from accidental explosions associated with ammunition logistics. The design concept is a polycarbonate shield mounted in a steel frame suspended immediately behind the window opening from steel cables connected to the ceiling and floor. Energy absorbers and lead mass concealed inside the frame control dynamic response of the shield to an explosion. The cables restrain the shield in a blocking position behind the window opening to protect the building interior during the critical time when blast overpressures, casing fragments, glass shards, and debris act on the window.
- Safety Engineering
- Structural Engineering and Building Technology
- Fluid Mechanics