• jones111
In summary, the conversation discusses how smaller objects in an explosion do not receive the full force of the blast, as they only come into contact with a small portion of the blast radius. The force experienced by a body is determined by the pressure difference and area it presents to the source of the explosion. The concept of damage is also discussed, with the recommendation to minimize the area exposed to the explosion in order to minimize potential damage.

#### jones111

Quick question:

My friend and I are having problems on how explosions work.

According to him, in a explosion smaller objects don't receive the full force of the blast since they only encompass a small fraction of the blast radius.

So basically let's say if I'm in the path of a grenade blast or something, I'm not actually receiving the full force of the blast but the portion that comes contact with my body?

Another thing is their like a scale in which when smaller objects are hit by a larger explosive blast, the damaged is amplified?

jones111 said:
Quick question:

My friend and I are having problems on how explosions work.

According to him, in a explosion smaller objects don't receive the full force of the blast since they only encompass a small fraction of the blast radius.

So basically let's say if I'm in the path of a grenade blast or something, I'm not actually receiving the full force of the blast but the portion that comes contact with my body?
That would be correct - after all, how would your body be affected by the part of the explosion that does not come into contact with it?

To be clear - most explosions have three main parts: the debris, the fireball, and the shockwave. In some explosions, the light-pulse is strong enough to be a problem too. But each part is like being in a room sprayed by bullets ... you are only affected by the bullets that hit you.

Note: the "full force" of the explosion on a body is the total force experienced by the body. It is the pressure difference multiplied by the area. Strictly speaking you should say that a body does not intercept the full energy of the explosion - except in special situations, like when you fire a bullet, when the explosion is contained in some way.

Another thing is their like a scale in which when smaller objects are hit by a larger explosive blast, the damaged is amplified?
I don't understand that question - can you provide an example?

Some sloppy terminology here but your friend is basically correct. The explosion is essentially a radial pressure wave, and the force you feel derives from a gradient in that pressure wave (high pressure from the compressed air will push you backwards). Force = pressure times area, so if you present a larger area to the source, you have a proportionally larger force.

"Damage" is a slippery term and depends a lot on the particular material. But I'd definitely recommend trying to minimise your area as seen by the source of the explosion. You'd certainly not want to do a star jump as the pressure wave comes towards you.

## 1. What causes explosions?

Explosions are caused by rapid and violent chemical reactions, usually involving a large release of gas and heat.

## 2. Can explosions occur in outer space?

Yes, explosions can occur in outer space, but they may look different due to the lack of oxygen.

## 3. What are the different types of explosions?

There are several types of explosions, including chemical explosions, nuclear explosions, and physical explosions such as pressure or sonic booms.

## 4. Can explosions be controlled or prevented?

Explosions can be controlled through proper handling and storage of explosive materials. They can also be prevented by avoiding factors that can trigger explosions, such as heat, sparks, or friction.

## 5. How do scientists study explosions?

Scientists study explosions by conducting experiments and simulations, analyzing data and evidence from past explosions, and using mathematical models to understand the physics and chemistry involved.