Questions tagged [explosions]

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1answer
82 views

Can a nuclear weapon destroy another nuclear weapon in flight? [closed]

I was thinking the other day, we have quite a few nuclear weapons in our arsenal. Say a country uses ballistic or cruise missiles on us. Can't you send up another nuclear weapon and detonate it within ...
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2answers
109 views

How are thermonuclear weapons possible?

Given the fact that thermonuclear devices are a mix of fission through enriched uranium whose energy initiates the fusion in surrounding deuterium. Question is (how come) fission raises temperature so ...
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1answer
65 views

How to simulate an explosion in space [closed]

I have a simulation of some bodies orbiting each other in space, and I would like to add explosions to it to see how the behave, but I don't know how to do it. Sorry if this is has been asked before, ...
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2answers
297 views

Was Chernobyl Explosion a Small Nuclear Detonation?

The Chernobyl reactor was designed to produce a maximum of 3.2 megawatts of power. It is now estimated to have produced 3.2 gigawatts of power in the final second of its life. The original ...
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1answer
898 views

How to calculate speed of shrapnel based on explosive's speed of detonation?

I'm trying to calculate the initial speed of shrapnel from a grenade. Using the US's M67 hand grenade as a baseline/reference: Total mass: 400g Explosive's mass: 180g Explosive's detonation speed: ...
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2answers
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Nuclear-powered Ramjet + criticality

I came across this Wikipedia entry about Project Pluto; a nuclear-powered ramjet that the U.S. was developing back in the day. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Pluto This missile would have ...
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2answers
83 views

Could you use the detonation of a Hydrogen bomb or atomic bomb to start a nuclear fusion reactor [closed]

Would this lead to a reactor that produced more energy than you put in?
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1answer
90 views

Is it possible to destroy a typhoon by bombs?

When a typhoon is still on the ocean, if a big bomb or several bombs are thrown to it, maybe at the eye, or at the part where the wind circles fastest, can the bomb destroy the typhoon?
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Is $TdS = dU + PdV$ true at very high strain rates? (Thermodynamic equilibrium)

I have read some reports of scientists who are interested in equations of state for unreacted explosives. They want these equations of state to describe the mechanical response of an explosive as it ...
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2answers
337 views

How would a nuclear explosion really operate in outer space?

(Repost from RPG.SE, per the community's suggestion.) A friend recommended I post this question here - said I'd be more likely to get a useful response than, say, from Reddit. My question is: How ...
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0answers
20 views

What is the “explosion” caused by Hawking radiation, and how do you calculate its strength? [duplicate]

According to my limited knowledge of Hawking radiation, there is an "explosion" when the black hole fully radiates away. What is this explosion? Is it in the form of EM radiation only, or something ...
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3answers
89 views

Waves generated in an explosion

A cracking furnace exploded in a petrochemical industry building near my city somedays ago. The building is more or less far from the city, and even so people could notice the explosion. The windows ...
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3answers
395 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 ...
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1answer
86 views

Trinity vs Nagasaki

From what I read the radiation levels in Nagasaki today are equivalent to the natural background radiation levels in the surrounding areas. On the other hand, the radiation levels at the Trinity test ...
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0answers
68 views

How can corium eating its way into water tanks cause a megaton scale explosion? [duplicate]

The 2019 miniseries "Chernobyl" appears to state that the "lava like" substance of melted radioactive matter from the core, the so-called "corium", could eat its way down into the water reservoirs ...
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1answer
60 views

Will the mass of a stick of dynamite be conserved when it is exploded?

If a stick of dynamite is blown up in a hermetically sealed chamber, the mass of the chamber and fragments, the heat, sound, and light would still be equal to the original mass of the chamber and ...
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8answers
26k views

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 ...
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1answer
88 views

What is the maximum energy that can be released by thermonuclear device?

Forgive me by posing this somewhat scary question, but it's just out of curiosity I'm asking it. In this video we're witnessing the beautiful and at the same time horrific blast of the tsar bomba, ...
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2answers
3k views

What would happen if you dropped a stick of dynamite from a high place?

If you were to drop a stick of dynamite from a high place, what would happen once it hit the ground, and why?
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1answer
236 views

Is making nuclear bomb using natural uranium possible?

I know that the critical size of natural uranium metal with graphite moderator is about 27 tons "oak ridge graphite reactor". for comparison highly enriched uranium have only 17 kg critical size with ...
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2answers
196 views

Can hydrogen plasma react with oxygen?

What if you put hydrogen in a vacuum and turned it into a plasma? There is no oxygen in the vacuum, but once you eject the plasma would it react drastically with the oxygen? Would it explode? Would ...
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1answer
47 views

What comes out of binary black holes at end of inspiral?

When 2 blackholes are orbiting each other so close that they lose more energy in form of gravitational wave, this process is inspiral and is unstoppable until it explodes. This is an extremely violent ...
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2answers
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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 ...
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5answers
916 views

What is the Half-Life of a Large Chunk of Fissile Material?

Uranium-$235$ has a half-life of about $700$ million years and a critical mass of about $52\,$kg. That means if you take a large number of $U$-$235$ atoms, say a $26 \,$kg amount, and put each atom in ...
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0answers
57 views

How can I calculate the impulse caused by a nuclear bomb on structures?

I want to calculate the impulse caused by a nuclear bomb on structures. Is there a function that I can use to calculate the amount of impulse acted upon by a nuclear bomb depending on its size? Also, ...
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1answer
85 views

How does the lower-explosion-limit (LEL) of gasoline depend on O2 concentration?

The lower-explosion-limit (equal to lower-flameable-limit) of gasoline is 1.4 vol.-%. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flammability_limit) I assume that this value derived for the mixture between ...
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1answer
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Does plutonium need to be squeezed to produce an uncontrolled chain reaction?

I guess what I am asking is if in theory you could start with a certain amount of plutonium would it explode with out being squeezed together as is done in an atomic bomb ? Normally what happens ( ...
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1answer
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Is kinetic energy of a system conserved during bomb explosion? [duplicate]

Conservation of momentum is a very obvious thing, but I can't figure out if kinetic energy would be conserved or not. You can think in two ways: Initial kinetic energy is zero and final kinetic ...
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3answers
811 views

How can you protect yourself from an acoustic shock wave?

To protect your electronics during a huge Electromagnetic Pulse in the RF range, all one needs is a Faraday shield for the most part. On the other hand, what do you do when you are near an acoustic ...
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1answer
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What will happen to you if you're standing near exploding TNT bomb near 20meter away in Vaccum?

What I think here could be ,that we'll feel less powerful shock wave as there is no medium of air through which gases can travel . If their is any other possibilities than please suggest !
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2answers
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Temperature of macroscopic explosions

How would one mathematically determine the temperature (if possible) of a detonation (non-chemical) of something on a macroscopic scale; more specifically: detonations from matter and anti-matter ...
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2answers
364 views

What happens if Jupiter is ignited?

I was wondering, what would happen if there was a large amount of oxygen released into Jupiter's atmosphere, than igniting it? Because Jupiter is 90% gas, therefore being a big fire waiting to happen (...
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2answers
65 views

Observations of a mushroom cloud

In this video of a nuclear bomb detonation/mushroom cloud, a few peculiarities arise and I simply had a couple questions pertaining to observations in the animation: Following the detonation, the ...
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1answer
70 views

Would I see a mushroom cloud if I nuke the sun corona?

The sun corona can reach an extremely high temperature at least a few million degree, say if the temperature of the explosion of a nuclear bomb is roughly equal to the temperature of the corona then ...
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1answer
438 views

Why Hydrogen bomb is called “Thermonuclear Bomb”?

Why do we call Hydrogen bomb as "Thermonuclear Bomb" ?
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2answers
201 views

What would happen if you detonated a nuclear bomb inside a tank of liquid hydrogen?

Say you had a large bomb - take the 50 megaton Tsar Bomba. You then proceed to place it in the center of a spherical tank containing liquid hydrogen, and then detonate it. Could you start a fusion ...
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1answer
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What % of the energy from a spherical explosion pushes away a perpendicular plane?

I'm trying to figure out how much energy from an explosion pushes away an object vs either completely missing it or having its horizontal component cancelled out by an opposing horizontal force from ...
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4answers
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Why exactly do atomic bombs explode?

In atomic bombs, nuclear reactions provide the energy of the explosion. In every reaction, a thermal neutron reaches a plutonium or a uranium nucleus, a fission reaction takes place, and two or three ...
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2answers
55 views

What neutron spectrum should be produced from a low level nuclear fission event?

I am trying to determine what neutron spectrum would be produced by a low level nuclear event (for example a tactical nuclear weapon). What ratio or combination of thermal, slow, and fast neutrons ...
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1answer
703 views

How fast would the destruction caused by an asteroid impact travel on earth?

I know it depends on mass and speed, so take for example the asteroid that caused dinosaurs mass extinction. I read that it was 6km (10 miles) wide. How fast did the destruction - trees, rocks, dirt, ...
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2answers
164 views

Why it took such a long time for an army of physicists to realize the atomic bomb, while in theory it seems pretty easy?

I think most of us know about the construction of the first atomic bomb at Los Alamos, with Robert Oppenheimer (who said he became "The destroyer of worlds", which goes to show he regretted his ...
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0answers
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Does mankind possess the technology to intentionally trigger a Yellowstone eruption? [closed]

The Yellowstone Caldera eruption will probably be an Extinction Level Event when it eventually happens. Suppose some lunatic wanted to set it off now, with drills, bombs, or whatnot. Say this lunatic ...
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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 ...
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1answer
128 views

Can a fusion bomb make electricity? [closed]

Would blast energy remove a single piece of pre-cut earth above an underground explosive? Could you then break apart the piece of earth and lower it back into the cavity as a way of generating power? ...
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2answers
794 views

Barrel length influence in muzzle velocity

I want to find out what is the muzzle velocity of a bullet. For that I would need to know the force applied to the bullet by the expanding gas of the exploded powder. If $P = F/A$ then $F = PA$. I ...
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1answer
275 views

Putting grams of antimatter in the atmosphere

From some rough calculations with 10g of anti hydrogen, I came out at roughly a gigatonne of TNT's worth of energy - 1.2x10^22J. That should be a pure gamma output initially, but I'm curious as to ...
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0answers
64 views

Can the Leidenfrost effect mitigate thermal effects of a nuclear blast? [closed]

I'm just spit-balling ideas for a video game scenario. I'm curious whether an above-ground structure with active insulation layers could withstand being in the blast radius of a strike capable of ...
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2answers
173 views

Distinguishing an underground Hydrogen bomb test from a fission bomb explosion

A related question is Hydrogen bomb radiation output, but my question is based on the seismograph data (or any other data) possibly producing a distinctive pattern. Is it possible to tell the ...
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1answer
78 views

Can an atomic bomb/rocket with nuclear warhead's nuclear explosion be triggered by a conventional explosion close to it?

Starting the nuclear chain reaction isn't achieved trivially and depends on the design ((shot)gun or implosion). Can one be sure that with either of those designs the chain reaction (causing a thermo-...
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3answers
257 views

Could you cause a small “nuclear” explosion manually

I've been having a discussion with a friend about nuclear materials and whether bringing two bits of subcritical fissile material together at a decent enough speed would cause a spontaneous explosion. ...