Operation SUN BEAM. Shot Little Feller II. Project Officers Report. Project 1.5. Debris Throwout,
ARMY ENGINEER RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT LABS FORT BELVOIR VA
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To assess the significance of surface missiles as a casualty producing source from very low-yield, near-surface, nuclear bursts was the primary objective of this experiment. Test objects which consisted of cylinders, cubes, plates, and various building materials were placed in a pattern around ground zero and, by locating these objects and determining reactions and displacements, the significance of this hazard was evaluated. This was the first experiment of this type to investigate solely blast-driven surface debris. Results showed that twenty percent of the test objects were displaced a distance of 300 feet or more from ground zero. The maximum displacement was 711 feet. In addition to the objects, tree branches were placed at varying heights above the ground surface and at varying distances out to 200 feet from ground zero. Large poles were used to hold the branches perpendicular to radial lines extending out from ground zero. The maximum branch displacement was 420 feet from ground zero, and twenty percent of all branches were displaced over 260 feet from ground zero.