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Ignition of thermally sensitive explosives between a contact surface and a shock

By G.J. Sharpe and M. Short


The dynamics of ignition between a contact surface and a shock wave is investigated using a\ud one-step reaction model with Arrhenius kinetics. Both large activation energy asymptotics and\ud high-resolution finite activation energy numerical simulations are employed. Emphasis is on comparing\ud and contrasting the solutions with those of the ignition process between a piston and a shock,\ud considered previously. The large activation energy asymptotic solutions are found to be qualitatively\ud different from the piston driven shock case, in that thermal runaway first occurs ahead of\ud the contact surface, and both forward and backward moving reaction waves emerge. These waves\ud take the form of quasi-steady weak detonations that may later transition into strong detonation\ud waves. For the finite activation energies considered in the numerical simulations, the results are\ud qualitatively different to the asymptotic predictions in that no backward weak detonation wave\ud forms, and there is only a weak dependence of the evolutionary events on the acoustic impedance\ud of the contact surface. The above conclusions are relevant to gas phase equation of state models.\ud However, when a large polytropic index more representative of condensed phase explosives is used,\ud the large activation energy asymptotic and finite activation energy numerical results are found to\ud be in quantitative agreement

Publisher: American Institute of Physics
Year: 2007
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