Dynamic Loading on Vehicle Systems


Contact Information

Carl E. Weiss
Manager
Ballistics & Explosives Engineering
(210) 522-3996
cweiss@swri.org

Donald J. Grosch
Manager
Ballistics & Explosives Range
(210) 522-3176
dgrosch@swri.org

image: A high-explosive projectile impacted a simulated wing section containing fuel as part of a test 
					series to validate the safety of an SwRI-designed replacement foam insert.

A high-explosive projectile impacted a simulated wing section containing fuel as part of a test series to validate the safety of an SwRI-designed replacement foam insert.

 

image: SwRI analyzed armor design and retrofits that greatly improved crew survivability against mine 
					blast for the HMMWV.

SwRI analyzed armor design and retrofits that greatly improved crew survivability against mine blast for the HMMWV.

 

image: Simulation of catastrophic failure of a generic solid rocket motor and subsequent pressure 
					loading on a generic launch vehicle. Red material is the solid rocket motor propellant and explosive products.

Simulation of catastrophic failure of a generic solid rocket motor and subsequent pressure loading on a generic launch vehicle. Red material is the solid rocket motor propellant and explosive products.

Research in a wide variety of complementary technology areas is performed at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) to improve resistance of vehicle systems to the catastrophic results of dynamic loads. For commercial and military land, air, and sea vehicles, the studies include:

  • Bomb blast with instrumented experiments
  • Ballistic impact effects with instrumented experiments
  • Bird strike
  • Structural analyses and calculations
  • Materials evaluation
  • Materials selection
  • Materials testing
  • Vibration testing
  • Extreme environment testing

Laboratory Facilities and Computational Capabilities

SwRI maintains extensive laboratory facilities and computational capabilities to support these efforts. Studies are conducted to verify existing hardening features in vehicles or to design and develop these features.

Military Applications

Specific military applications include:

  • Vulnerability testing
  • Hydrodynamic ram in liquid tanks
  • Ballistic fire vulnerability
  • Blast-induced fire vulnerability

Various armor concepts have been evaluated experimentally and numerically against a gamut of ballistic and blast threats. SwRI is world-renowned for work conducted in penetration mechanics, highlighted by the development of penetration models, including the widely recognized Walker-Anderson model.

Dynamic Loading Capabilities

SwRI analyzed armor design and retrofits that greatly improved crew survivability against mine blast for the HMMWV.

Simulation of catastrophic failure of a generic solid rocket motor and subsequent pressure loading on a generic launch vehicle. Red material is the solid rocket motor propellant and explosive products.

  • .30 cal to 50 mm gunfire ballistics with a wide variety of projectiles
  • Up to 1,000 lbs of TNT blast test
    • Mines
    • Shaped charges
    • Rocket-propelled grenades
    • Explosively formed projectiles
    • Bombs
  • Bird strike testing
  • High-speed digital imaging up to 100,000,000 frames per second
  • 95+ channels of high-speed data acquisition up to 200 MHz
  • Test fixture fabrication, structural assembly, welding
  • SwRI ISO-compliant QA
  • Numerical analysis using a suite of codes:
    • CTH
    • ALE3D
    • CALE
    • LS-DYNA
    • EPIC 03
    • PRONTO
    • ProEngineer
    • FLOW-3D
  • Materials evaluation, including high-rate testing

Representative Dynamic Loading Experience

  • Identification and qualification of ballistic protection foam for the A-10 wing
  • Analyses and testing to enhance mine resistance of the HMMWV
  • Bird strike impact testing and qualification of commercial and military aircraft leading-edge structures and canopies
  • Numerical modeling and explosives testing on a variety of U.S. Army heavy vehicles and trucks subject to mine blast
  • Cruise missile and sympathetic detonation in missile magazines for the next-generation U.S. Navy ship
  • Conventional weapons effects and structural response for a composite deckhouse (next-generation U.S. Navy ship)
  • Explosive hazard assessment for next-generation reusable and expendable launch vehicle systems (Orbital Space Plan Program and Crew Exploration Vehicle Program)

Related Terminology

blast loading  •  impact loading  •  ballistic impact  •  fragment impact  •  vulnerability  •  survivability  •  mine blast  •  armored vehicles  •  structural dynamics simulations  •  vibration analyses  •  materials evaluation  •  Army vehicles  •  Navy vehicles  •  Air Force vehicles  •  aircraft  •  tanks  •  HMMWV  •  land mines  •  shaped charges  •  rocket-propelled grenade  •  explosively formed projectile  •  high-explosive incendiary  •  armor-piercing incendiary  •  ballistic shock  •  homeland security

Benefiting government, industry and the public through innovative science and technology
Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®), headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, is a multidisciplinary, independent, nonprofit, applied engineering and physical sciences research and development organization with 10 technical divisions.
04/15/14