Explosive containment chambers are produced for a number of purposes. Some chambers are designed to protect personnel from a single accidental explosion, such as storage in a manufacturing process. Other chambers are designed for multiple intended detonations such as a chamber used for explosive research and testing. Several bomb containment vessels are produced that are used for explosives storage and transportation, as well as the destruction of conventional and chemical-biological improvised explosive devices (IED). Multiple spherical vessels exist that are rated for multiple detonations of explosives that range from 10-lbs TNT equivalent to more than 25-lbs TNT in what would be considered a venting mode of operation. Additionally, there are similar chambers designed to limit the risk of exposure to hazardous materials during the transportation and destruction of an IED that has an associated chemical or biological hazard. The charge rating for these chambers is typically less due to the nature of the threat. A new type of bomb containment vessel has emerged to contain the effects of a device found in luggage or smaller shipping packages. These chambers are typically intended to contain IEDs that do not have an associated chemical or biological hazard. Often times these units do not have the preferred geometrical shape of a sphere because of use and spatial restrictions. Additionally, these units are designed for a single detonation of the design charge weight (i.e., it is not reusable). It is expected to undergo severe permanent displacement during an event, but will not rupture. Other explosive containment chambers are used to destroy military munitions. Many of these chambers have survived hundreds or even thousands or detonations. Typically, these chambers are designed using a dynamic non-linear finite element analysis (FEA) during initial design. Following the design phase, these vessels are tested to confirm performance, and (in the case of a sealed chamber) characterize the leakage characteristics. Additionally, the test program is intended to identify and eliminate any physical weaknesses in the system, quantify structural response of the system under various explosive charge weights, and identify operational and maintenance problems. This paper describes the design and testing procedures for these programs and compares them based on similarities and differences.

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