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The Detonation Phenomenon


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 (ISBN-13: 9780511410673)

This book introduces the detonation phenomenon in explosives. It is ideal for engineers and graduate students with a background in thermodynamics and fluid mechanics. The material is mostly qualitative, aiming to illustrate the physical aspects of the phenomenon. Classical idealized theories of detonation waves are presented first. These permit detonation speed, gas properties ahead of and behind the detonation wave, and the distribution of fluid properties within the detonation wave itself to be determined. Subsequent chapters describe in detail the real unstable structure of a detonation wave. One-, two-, and three-dimensional computer simulations are presented along with experimental results using various experimental techniques. The important effects of confinement and boundary conditions and their influence on the propagation of a detonation are also discussed. The final chapters cover the various ways detonation waves can be formed and provide a review of the outstanding problems and future directions in detonation research.

• Primarily qualitative description of the detonation phenomena • Begins with discussion of gasdynamic theory of shocks and combustion waves • Includes discussion of future challenges and research directions


1. Introduction; 2. Gasdynamic theory; 3. Dynamics of detonation products; 4. Laminar structure of detonations; 5. Unstable detonations: numerical; 6. Unstable detonations: experimental; 7. Influence of boundary conditions; 8. Deflagration to detonation transition; 9. Direct initiation of detonations; Epilogue.


'The Detonation Phenomenon by Professor John H. S. Lee is intended for engineers and graduate students with backgrounds in thermodynamics and fluid dynamics. It fulfills that mission perfectly. The book is an excellent, thorough review of the basic experimental and theoretical aspects of gas phase detonation.' Theoretical and Computational Fluid Dynamics

'The mathematical material is broadly accessible to undergraduate and graduate students while at the same time providing a sophisticated tutorial for experienced researchers coming to detonation from other fields. … Lee's treatment is extensive but deliberately not encyclopedic.' AIAA Journal

'A key strength of this book is its comprehensive, and in places, stunning display of the experimental record of complex detonation dynamics. This is accompanied by lucid and plausible phenomenological explanations of observations, often supported by straightforward, mathematically based theories.' J. M. Powers, Shock Waves

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