Questions tagged [explosions]

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4
votes
2answers
710 views

Power of Shockwaves

My question is about shockwaves and their power when they are created/how do they lose their power? Let's say that we have ground 0 with 10 grams of TATP on it. The detonation velocity of TATP is 5,...
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2answers
3k views

Why does a nuclear explosion have directionality?

It just occurred to me that almost all images I've seen of the (in)famous mushroom cloud show a vertical column rising perpendicular to the ground and a horizontal planar ring parallel to the ground. ...
27
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8answers
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How large would the steam explosion at Chernobyl have been?

So the second episode of the HBO series began to cover the risk of a steam explosion that led to them sending three divers into the water below the reactor to drain the tanks. This occurred after the ...
6
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4answers
4k views

How much of the energy from 1 megaton H Bomb explosion could we capture to do useful work?

The world is full of nuclear warheads being stockpiled. Controlled fusion power seems a long way away. Could we put these warheads to better use by exploding them in a controlled way and capturing ...
11
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1answer
3k views

What are the white lines in some nuclear bomb test photos?

What are those white lines connecting the ground to the sky on the left side of this photo? I've see these before in the nuclear bomb test films too. They're apparently already in place upon ...
4
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2answers
2k views

Antimatter bomb

I stumbled upon this wikipedia article on antimatter weaponry. Being greatly appalled by the sad fact that large sums of money are being wasted on this, I could not stop myself from thinking for a ...
45
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2answers
6k views

Cause for spikes in Trinity nuclear bomb test

In Richard Rhodes' book, The Making of the Atomic Bomb, I was reading about the Trinity nuclear test. High speed photos were taken and this one is from <1ms after the detonation. The book mentions ...
14
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4answers
13k views

Can open, unsafe nuclear fusion reaction burn the atmosphere?

I happened to hear people saying that the nuclear fusion bomb tests could set the atmosphere on fire. I have some serious doubts about that - but I have no facts. Nuclear fusion reaction requires $15*...
11
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4answers
5k views

Why do meteors explode?

A report on the Chelyabinsk meteor event earlier this year states Russian meteor blast injures at least 1,000 people, authorities say My question is Why do meteors explode? Do all meteors ...
4
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1answer
571 views

Estimate post-shock temperature of nuclear explosion

I was recently shown a very interesting sequence of images depicting the expansion of the fireball of Trinity explosion, a nuclear weapon's test conducted in New Mexico in 1945. I read here that the ...
3
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3answers
16k views

Conservation of momentum and energy in an explosion

One simple problem is physics is to determine the mechanical energy difference after an explosion. To do this, you must assume that momentum is conserved because in a explosion you have internal ...
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3answers
1k views

the sounds of an exploding star

We know that space cannot spread a sound wave as there is no "air" or a medium that would support the spread of a sound wave. However if we put ourselves in the vicinity of an exploding star, would it ...
100
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4answers
35k views

Would a pin head heated to 15 million degrees Celsius kill everyone in a 1000 mile radius?

The YouTube video How Hot Can it Get? contains, at the 2:33 mark, the following claim: A pin head heated to 15 million degrees will kill everyone in a 1000 miles radius. On what basis can this ...
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3answers
1k views

Why do nuclear bombs make a mushroom?

Atomic bombs make mushroom. It's well-known and we've seen many images of atomic experiments around the world. My question is, what causes the mushroom shape? Do conventional explosives like TNT and ...
49
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2answers
9k views

How do we get supersonic bullets?

I recently answered a question on the WorldBuilding forum about grenades and bullets. One of the things that came up was that I argued smokeless powder in a rifle round could detonate, but was ...
11
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1answer
14k views

How and why would a glass table break in this manner?

Recently, a relative of mine came to me asking me to explain a strange physics phenomenon. She had 3 glass tables; 2 small and one large arranged neatly such that the small tables were half enclosed ...
10
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1answer
481 views

What happened to this folded paper in a hydraulic press?

The video below apparently shows a man folding an A3 size piece of paper 7 times, putting it under the hydraulic press each time. After 7 folds, on the last press, the paper sort of explodes. What's ...
5
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1answer
1k views

How would the explosion from a Pure Fusion Bomb differ from the explosion from a Fission Nuclear Bomb?

Suppose we have the technology to create high enough temperatures and pressures inside a confined space to fuse together deuterium and tritium, and create a Pure Fusion Bomb. How would the explosion ...
6
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1answer
19k views

short circuit an alkaline battery

i'm not doing anything related to physics, but i'm just curious : What really happen when i short circuit an alkaline battery ? some article in the net shown that fire/explosion can be happened when ...
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0answers
73 views

Sedov-Taylor blastwave resources

What are some resources for learning about blast waves? Particularly the Sedov-Taylor solution? The specific application is modeling supernovae.
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1answer
1k views

Help with equations for deflecting an asteroid

This is a homework assignment, but not the physics part. I have to write a python script to simulate the size of a warhead required to deflect an asteroid (parameters inputted by user) that is on a ...
10
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3answers
401 views

Could the end cap of the Pascal B (1) survive its trip through the atmosphere?

In 1957, the US had a nuclear test where a shaft was dug 152 meters into the ground. A 100 mm thick, 900 kg steel plug was installed and welded at the top of the shaft. Under it was 2 feet of ...
6
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2answers
12k views

Do brick walls effectively protect against ionizing radiation from a nuclear explosion?

Of course it depends on the distance and the amount of radiation, so let's say its about 10,000 Rad. Now, can wall made of brick protect someone behind it from such radiation ?
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2answers
1k views

Can a black hole explode?

In the nature many objects and processes have a critical point (like the more mass an object collects). Logically is that inside black holes the more violent things happen the more matter is inside. ...
3
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3answers
596 views

Armageddon prevention

I was watching the movie Armageddon and it made me think of a few things. We would probably not need to send a crew to blow the asteroid in two, I think we could still send a warhead with enough power ...
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1answer
1k views

What is the spectrum of a nuclear bomb in a vacuum?

This question about 'nukes in space' mentions that the two forms of energy released from a nuclear bomb come from neutrons and photons (the latter about 104 times the former). It's mentioned that the ...
2
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2answers
146 views

Can supernovas or other explosive events release relativistic bombs?

I recently asked a question in Space Travel SE where we were exploring ideas on how to get a space craft that weighs 1 kg to travel at 0.1c (one tenth the speed of light). At this rate, it would be ...
2
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2answers
1k views

How powerful would an explosion have to be for its effects to be felt worldwide?

If an explosion were to occur at any point on earth, how powerful would that explosion have to be for it to be audible or otherwise detectable by every person on the planet? Detection could mean ...
2
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1answer
399 views

What causes the expansion and implosion of the medium before an explosion?

I often see in slo-mo explosions, whether underwater or in air, the medium expanding outward before imploding, at which point the flash of the explosion happens. I used to think this was a cool movie ...
2
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3answers
2k views

What decides the velocity of a bullet coming out from the gun?

I was concerned about what determines the speed of the bullet coming out from the gun. Is it determined by the strength of the explosive or how fast does it burn up? For example if we take the same ...
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1answer
1k views

Determining the force of an explosion, is it external or internal?

A time bomb put inside a box is left into the vacuum: it explodes...the box coverings starts moving I want to ask: is the force behind sudden acceleration internal or external I am confused about ...
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2answers
53k views

What would happen after the collision matter and the anti-matter [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What actually happens when an anti-matter projectile collides with matter? Suppose 1 kg of a stray meteorite anti-matter moves to the earth. What would happen after the ...