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Proceedings Paper

Determination of critical energy criteria for hexanitrostilbene using laser-driven flyer plates
Author(s): Mike D. Bowden; Matthew P Maisey
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Paper Abstract

Laser-driven flyer plates comprise of one or more thin layers forming a foil coated onto a transparent substrate. Irradiation of the foil/substrate interface with a Q-switched laser pulse produces a plasma, the expansion of which forms a flyer plate, which can reach velocities in excess of 5 km/s. These plates impart shocks in excess of 50 GPa, with duration of less than a nanosecond. This shock is sufficient to initiate secondary explosives such as Hexanitrostilbene (HNS) and Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate (PETN). Thresholds of detonators based on laser-driven flyer plates are typically measured in terms of energy. By using a Photonic Doppler Velocimeter (PDV) we measure the velocity of the flyer plate at the threshold energy. This allows calculation of the shock pressure and duration imparted to the explosive. By initiating HNS with a variety of flyer thicknesses, from 3 to 5 &mgr;m, we are able to evaluate Pn&tgr; in this extreme shock regime. The calculated value of n is compared to published values and discussed for similar systems. We are also able to use the James Criterion to analyze the initiation, with values of Ec and &Sgr;c being determined from experimental data, providing a predictive capability to model other configurations such as different flyer thicknesses and materials.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 September 2008
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7070, Optical Technologies for Arming, Safing, Fuzing, and Firing IV, 707004 (3 September 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.796271
Show Author Affiliations
Mike D. Bowden, Atomic Weapons Establishment (United Kingdom)
Matthew P Maisey, Atomic Weapons Establishment (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7070:
Optical Technologies for Arming, Safing, Fuzing, and Firing IV
Fred M. Dickey; Richard A. Beyer, Editor(s)

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