Fragmentation and lethality

  • V. R. Thiruvenkatachar Defence Science Laboratory, New Delhi
Keywords: Bomb, Lethality, Shell


"The lethality of a H.E. shell or bomb depends on its ability to produce high velocity fragments and blast. The relative importance of these two damaging agents depends on the nature of the targets it is proposed to destroy. Small, high-velocity fragments are effective for the attack of personnel in the open, but aircraft targets require larger fragments. The blast effect from shell-burst inside aircraft wings does considerable damage, but blast is of relatively little importance against heavily armoured targets such as tanks. Fragment effect ceases to be of primary importance here and if the HE shell is to be lethal to such targets it must carry a very large charge of explosive, which will either ""scab"" the armour or do extensive structural damage by blast and shock. For assessing the effectiveness of a fragmenting shell or bomb against a given type of target, we have to take into account different characteristics of ammunition and target. The solution of the problem of lethality of ammunition will involve a determination of fragmentation in regard to total number of a design with a specific level of lethality in a given situation, it will be necessary to predict the performance for given design data, a process which demands a theoretical treatment if possible, or at least a sufficient quantity of experimental data which can yield reliable empirical formulae. In this paper an account is given of the various theoretical and empirical aspects and a discussion of these with reference to certain special cases. "
How to Cite
Thiruvenkatachar, V. (2014). Fragmentation and lethality. Defence Science Journal, 8(2), 132-140.
Aeronautical Systems