College of EngineeringDepartment of Aerospace EngineeringResearchSeminarsEventsDr. Suraj Ravindran, California Institute of Technology

Dr. Suraj Ravindran, California Institute of Technology

Accidental Detonation of Explosives – connections to the High Rate Local Deformation Mechanisms
August 30, 2019


Millions of tons of explosives are used in mining, civil engineering, and military applications. The accidental weak impact loading of these materials may cause detonation which can be catastrophic and tremendously costly. These accidental explosions are believed to be due to the formation of highly localized temperature regions called hot spots. The hot spot formation is associated with the local energy dissipation mechanisms in the material during dynamic loading. However, the local deformation mechanism that leads to the hot spot formation in explosives is still not very clear. The primary focus of the present work is to understand the local deformation mechanisms in explosives subjected to high-rate loading. High spatiotemporal resolution experiments are conducted in explosive simulants and the rate-dependent deformation and failure mechanisms are identified. Finally, the high-spatio temporal resolution infrared thermometry experiments revealed the primary deformation mechanism for the hot spot formation.


Dr. Suraj Ravindran

Post-doctoral scholar at California Institute of Technology working on strength measurements of magnesium and copper at pressures higher than 5 GPa. He completed his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of South Carolina in 2018 and his Masters from the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai in 2011. He worked in General Electric Aviation from 2011-2013. During his Ph.D. research, he mainly worked on understanding the multiscale deformation behavior of explosives subjected to dynamic loading. In addition, he worked on multiple research problems during his Ph.D. leading to 18 journal publications. He received the Peterson Award in 2018 for the best paper published in the Journal of Dynamics Behavior of materials, and the ‘Breakthrough Scholar’ award from the University of South Carolina in 2017.