# Explosive Decompression

Quick question, cuz i am new to this term. Would explosive decompression happen at 30m below sea, in a submarine, if we would make an small opening, like from a bullet?

Thanks

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This question is so vague its ridiculous. This is a materials' properties problem.

Drakkith
Staff Emeritus
No, explosive decompression would not occur in a sub under water. What would occur is the opposite effect. The great pressure on the sub would force water in at tremendous pressure/velocity.

Imagine holding your thumb over the opening in a garden hose. The water pressure behind your thumb has built up, causing you to have a hard time holding it closed. When you release just a small portion the water comes shooting out at high velocity, enabling you to water things from 10-20 ft away depending on your water pressure. Increase the pressure by opening the valve more and you can get a longer stream of water. Decrease it and the stream decreases.

Lets say we have an Aircraft at 40,000 ft. If for some reason his canopy suddenly shattered, then the pressure inside the cockpit would quickly equalize to the lower outside pressure. If this occurs fast enough, with a great enough pressure difference, then we call that explosive decompression.

DaveC426913
Gold Member
Quick question, cuz i am new to this term. Would explosive decompression happen at 30m below sea, in a submarine, if we would make an small opening, like from a bullet?

Thanks
As drakkith points out, the pressure is inward. Subs don't explode; they implode.

At 30m, the pressure is 3atm above air pressure.

If 1 square inch hole were made in the sub, it would come through with a force to support 14.7x3 = 44lbs. (A bullet hole is smaller, less than a quarter of that.)

That would do damage to anything in its way, but not immediately catastrophic.

The bigger issue would be that - in order to apply a force to penetrate the sub with a bullet-sized hole - you would possibly rupture its integrity, causing the hull to collapse.