The dynamic response of a periodically simply supported, infinitely long, circular cylindrical shell to a pressure suddenly applied through the surrounding acoustic medium is investigated. The incident particle velocity is zero, and the pressure is assumed to have a harmonic spatial variation parallel to the shell axis. The exact solution is obtained by use of a Fourier integral transform, and the resulting inversion integral is evaluated by numerical and asymptotic integration. Two solutions to the same problem are obtained by using a plane and cylindrical wave approximation for the radiated field. The range of their applicability is investigated. For a steel shell in water  
it is found that, when the supports are placed three shell diameters apart, the use of the cylindrical wave approximation results in a 5-percent underestimation of the maximum deflection, while when the supports are placed one sixth of a shell diameter apart, the approximations are invalid.
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