Masters Theses


"The use of explosives to construct obstacles which impede the enemy or close his routes of communication has long been employed by our armies. They have developed fairly effective methods for destroying bridges, setting up road craters and constructing abatis. However, one phase of obstacle construction, that of tunnel demolition, has been neglected in that no procedures or methods have been formulated which will aid in the proper destruction of tunnels.

At the present time, under the auspices of the Department of the Army, The Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy is conducting a research program on tunnel demolition. The entire investigation is to cover both hasty and deliberate methods of tunnel demolition. Hasty demolition is that type of demolition which requires no previous preparation of the tunnel site before charge placement. Deliberate demolition requires time and effort in preparing the tunnel prior to the placement of the charge.

At the completion of the project, the Missouri School of Mines will recommend to the Department of the Army the most feasible approach to the theories and techniques for the destruction of tunnels by explosive charges. This recommendation will cover various types of charges placed in different types of tunnels for both hasty and deliberate demolition.

This paper is confined to the study of hasty demolition of tunnels and the degree of influence of various factors which may be encountered. The factors which were studied are:

  1. Length of tunnel
  2. Character and tightness of tunnel lining
  3. Cross-sectional area of tunnel
  4. Cross-sectional shape of tunnel
  5. Various sizes of explosive charges
  6. Different methods of charge placement
  7. Different types of military explosives

The approach to the problem began by the construction of scale models to simulate tunnels under these varying conditions. By following the principles of similitude, it was possible to study the demolition effects of each of the above factors. A total of 21 tunnels were built and tested. To the writer's knowledge, nothing has been published concerning research on tunnel demolition. However, because of a recognized need for effective methods of tunnel destruction, The Corps of Engineers decided to sponsor this research program"--Introduction, pages 1-2.


Clark, George Bromley, 1912-


Mining Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Mining Engineering


United States. Department of the Army


Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy

Publication Date



ix, 92 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (page 91).


© 1955 Richard L. Bullock, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Demolition, Military
Tunnels -- Testing
Blasting -- Testing
Explosives -- Testing

Thesis Number

T 1096

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Electronic OCLC #