Ballistics & Explosives Engineering

image of penetrating projectile and an explosion

The Ballistics and Explosives Engineering Section in the Mechanical Engineering Division provides expertise in analysis, design, and testing in the areas of ballistics, explosion loading, structural response, and scale modeling. Section personnel have developed models for penetration mechanics, shot-line analyses, shaped-charge analyses, exterior and interior ballistics, specialized sabot design, explosion hazards and debris, and analysis and design of blast-loaded structures. Testing capabilities include ballistics (small arms, long-rod projectiles, fragments, shaped charges), and dynamic loading and response of mechanical systems and structures and mechanical systems in highly transient environments. State-of-the-art data acquisition and instrumentation permits recording of data in severe environments down to the nanosecond range. Other services include numerical analysis of transient loads and structural response, armor design and analysis, software development, subsystem and system integration, and engineering consultation.

Carl Weiss, Manager

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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.