SCI has just released the first software module of EMBlast, its energetic materials blast load software. The software was released to the members of the Energetic Materials Blast Information Group (EMBIG), which has now been in existence for two years.
Shortly after its formation, the group members identified a need for software to calculate blast effects on structures because methods that are available to civilian organisations are often limited to simple legacy software developed by the US Military in the 1960s and 70s. These codes are automated versions of empirical formulae found in US Military manuals. They provide rapid results but require an understanding of the underlying methods to be used effectively and within their limits of application. These software codes were written for what are now obsolete operating systems (e.g. MS-DOS), hence are difficult to run and not user friendly. The US Department of Defence considers many of them to be classified and only licenses them to US contractors so their use by civilian organisations in the UK could be without the necessary licences.
EMBlast performs blast calculations for all the high explosives covered in ISO/FDIS 16933:2007 using TNT equivalence as well as user-customisable explosives. The completed free-field module covers hemispherical surface bursts on hard and soft ground, spherical free-air bursts and spherical above ground bursts. It generates graphical and numerical reports of incident and reflected pressure and impulse time-history. It also calculates peak incident and reflected pressure, impulse and arrival time as a function of range for multiple target points.
Work will commence in the new year on the development of the next two modules dealing with blast loads on structures and internal detonations.
The group members currently include: The Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE), BAE Systems, Ministry of Defence, The Centre for the Protection of the National Infrastructure (CPNI), The Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Chemring Countermeasures, Thornton Tomasetti, DNVGL, Aibara Associates Ltd, Patrick Mann & Associates, ColMor Consulting and 8065 Limited.