Transverse Wave Instability in a Solid Explosive

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Science  20 Feb 1970:
Vol. 167, Issue 3921, pp. 1124-1126
DOI: 10.1126/science.167.3921.1124


By the use of a metal indentation techinque, microscopic transverse or side-running shock waves can be detected in composition C-4, an explosive consisting largely of cyclonite (RDX) with organic plasticizers. The minimum wave spacing observed is approximately 0.05 millimeters. with a lateral velocity of about 6.5 millimeters per microsecond. The instability was demnostrated in cylindrically divergent detonation waves.

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