Simulating the Response to Air Blast Loading on Glass Windows with Wire Mesh Protection

Joel Ingram


Investigating the effect of air blast loading on materials and structures has become increasingly prioritised as a result of modern day terror levels and security threats. The air blast shock wave is the principle damage factor during a blast. Since it is a challenge to validate and optimise protective structures using full-scale experimental tests, this study examined the effect of air blast loading by means of numerical analysis through utilisation of finite element techniques. AUTODYN software was used to simulate the behaviour of glass panels subjected to various blast loads. The numerical model was also used to perform intensive simulations studying the effect of the glass panel boundary conditions, stand-off distances, size and type of charges and protection offered by a simple wire mesh security screen situated between the glass and the detonation source. Parametric studies were conducted to investigate the dependence of blast protection on screen design and configuration. The permeable area of the screen was found to have the greatest effect on pressure drops. The screen offered more protection the closer it moved to the blast source, and was more effective for smaller charges due to lower deformation. Frame characteristics were also found to impact the blast propagation significantly. The accuracy of the numerical model in prediction of glass window responses was verified by the use of a scaling parameter and associated analytical equations, and the results from previously conducted field blast testing available in literature.


Blast; Protection; Dynamic response; Mesh screen; Parametric study; Impact; Structural Engineering

Full Text: