The UC San Diego blast simulator characterizes the response of civilian and military components and systems to terrorist explosive attack and high impact scenarios. It identifies threat mitigation and hardening optimization strategies using both retrofit and new construction methods and materials.
The hydraulic/high pressure nitrogen based blast simulator simulates full-scale explosive loads up to 12,000 psi-msec without live explosives and without a fireball permitting structural responses to be seen as they occur. Energy deposition takes place in time intervals of 2 to 4 ms, the same as in a live explosive event. Impact scenarios with longer durations are also simulated. High-speed cameras with tracking software, and strain gages and accelerometers collect test data.