The influence of water, dry sand, and unsaturated sand constitutive behavior on the blast response of a rigid target

D. M. Fox, J. S. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)


A combination of soil characterizations, computations and small-scale experiments were performed in order to better understand the behavior of shallow-buried explosives. The constitutive behavior of the soil was determined using a combination of high pressure quasi-static tests and effective stress theory; the motion of rigid objects impacted by the material flow resulting from blast experiments was measured by use of high-speed digital video photography. Computations that simulated the blast experiments were performed by use of an arbitrary Lagrangian Eulerian (ALE) treatment in a nonlinear finite element code. We used a factorial design approach to deduce the underlying mechanics of such systems. Using this approach, we found that, for water and for dry and partially saturated granular materials lower deviatoric yield strength was a key factor which caused sand or water to flow more readily thereby producing higher levels of momentum loading to bodies in close proximity to the buried explosive. We found that higher bulk stiffness and mass density were moderately important factors although they were less significant than was the shear strength of the medium containing the explosive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-173
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Impact Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Mar 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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