# How can I graph the pressure behind a dam after a bomb explosion?

• qubert
In summary, the bomb creates a pressure of 100 kN/m2 over the entire face of the dam. Changing the thickness of the dam walls will increase the yield strength, but it needs to be done keeping elastic properties in mind.
qubert
m studying civil engineering and trying to research how a bomb would affect a dam, but i know little about physics so could anyone help with this problem?

dam has dimensions 7.6m wide at the top, 39.6m wide at the bottom and 34m tall, water level is 2m from top of the dam.

135*10^6 cubic metres of water behind dam

bomb explodes at a depth of 9m and creates a pressure of 100kN/m^2 over the back of the dam in addition to the water,

how would i draw a graph to represent the pressure behind the dam?

many thanks..

Hi qubert,
Do you know how to find pressure on the dam as a function of depth?
... bomb explodes at a depth of 9m and creates a pressure of 100kN/m^2 over the back of the dam in addition to the water,
From the way this is worded, I read this to mean only that the bomb creates a pressure of 100 kN/m^2 over the entire face of the damn (all over). Unless there is some additional information (such as how far away from the dam the bomb explodes and the pressure is 100 kN/m^2 at some given radius) then I think we have to assume the pressure is superimposed on top of the pressure you find as a function of depth.

is it just force*area?

qubert said:
is it just force*area?

actually.. it's Force/Area.. but the thing here is more complicated than that. For an explosion, the damaging 'shock waves' generally travel via compressions and rarefactions in the air accompanied by shrapnel. The thing is that when you use the formula Force/Area, you can directly substitute variables only if the Force is uniform over the complete area, which in our case is not because the shockwaves travel radially outwards (as a generalization) and hence depending on where the bomb exploded.. the force will be different at different areas and hence the pressure. So, for your case, pressure is rather the derivative of force with respect to area:

$$P = \frac{dF}{dA}$$

so to create this graph i would use this equation to find the pressure of 100kn and at each 1m and add the pressure of the water using pressure=water density*gravity*depth?, would it make any difference to the 2m of the dam protruding out of the water or the changing thickness of the dam? thanks

qubert said:
so to create this graph i would use this equation to find the pressure of 100kn and at each 1m and add the pressure of the water using pressure=water density*gravity*depth?, would it make any difference to the 2m of the dam protruding out of the water or the changing thickness of the dam? thanks

$$P = \rho_w mgh$$

is the pressure for a surface when gravity acts parallel to the application of force to it. You need the pressure for the wall of a dam, where gravity is perpendicular to the wall.

Also, a graph is drawn between two variables to show how they vary with each other. I'm not at all clear which graph you are talking about when you say that you want to 'draw a graph of pressure'. It has to be Pressure vs. something.

Can you please be clear on '2m of the dam protruding out of the water'. Changing the thickness of the dam walls will increase the yield strength. However it needs to be done keeping elastic properties in mind else despite an increase yield strength, the ability of the walls to withstand the shockwave will decrease.

Also, 'pressure of 100 kN/m^2' doesn't mean anything because as i said.. in the case of a bomb the pressure in bomb is not constant at a given area. It is different at different areas.

If you are dealing with a word problem from a textbook or something.. it'd be helpful if you quote the entire problem.

Theb bouncing bomb was designed to explode at a depth of 9m below the surface. The dam itself, had the dimensions shown below.

7.6m wide at top
39.6m wide at bottom
34m height
135x10^6m^3 of water behind dam
bomb sinks and explodes against wall at 9m depth

If the explosion developed a pressure of 100 kN/m2 over the back of the Dam in addition to the pressure from the water; draw a graph of the pressure behind the dam if the distance from water surface to top of dam is 2m. (Assume back of Dam to be vertical).

is the problem, thanks

i think by draw a graph it just means plot how the the pressure increases with depth? starting with 0 when the dam is out of the water getting higher with water pressure + the explosion?

## 1. What causes water pressure to increase?

Water pressure increases when the amount of water in a confined space is increased, or when the depth of the water increases. This is because the weight of the water above creates more force and pushes down on the water below, increasing the pressure.

## 2. Can water pressure cause explosions?

Yes, water pressure can cause explosions under certain conditions. When water is heated in a confined space, the molecules move faster and create more pressure. If this pressure is not released, it can build up and eventually explode.

## 3. How does water pressure affect objects?

Water pressure can affect objects in different ways. For example, if an object is submerged in water, the pressure of the water will push on it from all sides, which can cause it to compress or deform. In explosions, the high water pressure can also cause objects to be propelled with high force.

## 4. What is the relationship between water pressure and depth?

The relationship between water pressure and depth is direct - the deeper the water, the higher the pressure. This is because the weight of the water above increases with depth, creating more force and pressure on the water below.

## 5. How can water pressure be measured?

Water pressure can be measured using a device called a pressure gauge. This gauge measures the force exerted by the water on a specific area. Water pressure is typically measured in units of pounds per square inch (psi) or kilopascals (kPa).

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