Simulation of Waves by an Underwater Explosion

by Jan M. Jordaan, Jr.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Waterways and Harbors Division, 1969, Vol. 95, Issue 3, Pg. 355-378

Document Type: Journal Paper


The properties of water waves produced by underwater explosions were studied in a test basin where the underwater disturbance was simulated by means of a rapidly withdrawn or immersed paraboloidal plunger. Combinations of quick withdrawal or immersion of the 14-ft-diam half-paraboloid plunger located near the midpoint of one wall of the approximately 90 ft square basin were also carried out. A smaller 28 inch and a 45 inch sphere were also used to generate waves by dropping from various heights in 2.5 ft of water. The waves compare adequately with those predicted by the theory of Kranzer and Keller, although they were 40% smaller and 20% shorter. Scaling laws are presented by which it was found that waves were produced which when extrapolated adequately agreed with those from actual underwater detonations of a high-energy explosive of 5 ton TNT and a nuclear device of 20 kiloton equivalent yield.

Subject Headings: Water waves | Explosions | Scour | Paraboloid | Walls | Spheres | Wave generation | Fouling

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