Masters Theses

Keywords and Phrases

Dead pressing; Hole separation distance; Saturated ground; Sympathetic detonation


Dynamite and emulsions are very effective explosives in blasting; however they do have some shortcomings. Dynamite is prone to sympathetic detonation whereas emulsions are prone to dead pressing. While this does not happen all the time, the conditions in which the explosives are used do have an effect on whether or not they will sympathetically detonate or dead press.

Numerous researchers have investigated sympathetic detonation for a relationship between the distance between charges, hole separation distance, and size of explosive. This research aimed to look at how hole separation distance was affected when water was introduced into the boreholes for sympathetic detonation of dynamite. Also this research looked at the same setup for the dead pressing of emulsions.

To investigate sympathetic detonation, dynamite acceptor charges were placed at various distances from the donor charge. These distances were used for dry and wet holes. The same setup was used to study dead pressing in emulsions.

For sympathetic detonation, the author discovered that the hole separation distance nearly doubled when the boreholes were filled with water versus when the boreholes were dry. A similar relationship was found for the emulsion that was used. The range in which dead pressing occurred, nearly doubled in distance when the boreholes were filled with water versus when the boreholes were dry.

This is important because the conditions in which an explosive is used should be a significant consideration when loading holes. For example, when the ground is saturated, a pattern may have to be redesigned to prevent either sympathetic detonation or dead pressing from occurring.


Worsey, Paul Nicholas

Committee Member(s)

Baird, Jason, 1955-
Gertsch, Leslie S.


Mining Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Explosives Engineering


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Fall 2012


xiii, 126 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 32-34).


© 2012 Adam Michael Doerfler, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Blasting -- Testing
Explosives -- Testing

Thesis Number

T 10090

Electronic OCLC #