detonator to produce an explosion. The blast waves suck oxygen out of enclosed spaces and suffocate occupants. The rapidly expanding wave front due to overpressure flattens all objects within close proximity of the epicenter of the aerosol fuel cloud, and produces debilitating damage well beyond the flattened area. The main destructive force of
FAE is high overpressure, useful against soft targets such as minefields, armored vehicles, aircraft parked in the open, and bunkers.
|Fuel/air explosive represent the military application of the vapor cloud explosions and dust explosions accidents that have long bedeviled a variety of industries. And every year, many serious explosions and fires occur in industrial plants as a result of dust. Many materials form dust clouds that can easily ignite and explode, injuring personnel and damaging plant. This is a well-known phenomenon in the coal mining, grain storage, and the woodworking and paper industries. Many miners have been killed and injured and massive production losses have resulted from coal dust explosions in underground coal mining operations. Of the 129 grain dust explosions that occurred nationwide between 1987 and 1997, about half involved corn. Eleven were caused by wheat dust and 10 by dust from soybeans. Billions of tiny, highly combustible particles of grain are generated by grain kernels rubbing together as they move along conveyer belts and shifted between bins. Inside the enclosed chambers, those particles rise in a cloud. When the dust gets in with the right mixture of oxygen and comes in contact with a spark or even an overheated bearing on a conveyer belt, it is extremely explosive.|
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