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Published 2004 | Published
Book Section - Chapter Open

Detonation Initiation via Imploding Shock Waves


An imploding annular shock wave driven by a jet of air was used to initiate detonations inside a 76 mm diameter tube. The tube was filled with a test gas composed of either stoichiometric ethylene-oxygen or propane-oxygen diluted with nitrogen. The strength of the imploding shock wave and the sensitivity of the test gas were varied in an effort to find the minimum shock strength required for detonation of each test mixture. The results show that the minimum required shock strength increases with mixture sensitivity and suggest that impractically large shock driver pressures are required to initiate detonations in ethylene-air or propane-air mixtures when using this technique.

Additional Information

Copyright © 2004 by California Institute of Technology. Published by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Inc. with permission The authors would like to thank P. Buraczewski for his design work as well as J. Haggerty, B. St. John, and A. Kiani for their patience and expertise during the construction process. We are also grateful to Dr. G. Roy at the Office of Naval Research and Dr. J. Blevins and Dr. C. Morris at NASA MSFC for their support and would like to acknowledge discussions on shock implosion with Dr. C. Li and Dr. K. Kailasanath. This work was supported by the Office of Naval Research Grant Detonation Initiation by Annular Jets and Shock Waves (ONR grant number N00014-03-1-0931) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration through the Graduate Student Researchers Program (Grant number NGT8-52937).

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