Masters Theses


Brian Burch

Keywords and Phrases

Explosives; Linear Shaped Charge; Underwater


"When fired under water, a Linear Shaped Charge (LSC) does not penetrate a steel target as well as in air. This lack of performance has been a problem for shaped charge manufacturers and their clients. It was obvious that this degradation of performance is due to water having a higher density than air and water being incompressible compared to air. This study aimed to better determine how the water was affecting the LSC and to provide a method of mitigation.

LSCs of different sizes were submerged under water and fired through the water with and without a target. It was observed that the liner of the LSC did not close completely to form a "blade". This blade is the key component of an LSC's cutting ability. Under water the blade was forming a less effective cutting tool. The targets showed blunt impact, which confirms the blade being ineffective. The blunt impact also indicates the water was transferring the force rather than a blade impacting the target. This confirms that both the mass and incompressibility of water are at work. The difference in sizes between LSCs did not have a noticeable impact.

In order to mitigate these negative effects, foam was used to fill the entire volume of the standoff between the LSC and the target. Various foams were tested, again on different sizes of LSCs. The foam displaced the water, so the path of the blade formation had a much lower density and a compressible medium. The results showed the foam was effective. LSCs fired through foam under water had similar penetration profiles compared to the benchmark tests in air."--Abstract, page iii.


Worsey, Paul Nicholas

Committee Member(s)

Baird, Jason, 1955-
Rogers, J. David


Mining Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Explosives Engineering


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Summer 2014


x, 80 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 77-79).


© 2014 Brian Burch, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Shaped charges
Blasting -- Technique
Underwater explosions -- Equipment and supplies

Thesis Number

T 10504

Electronic OCLC #