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Ground loading from BLEVE through small scale experiments: experiments and results

Abstract : The ground force generated by a BLEVE is a hazard that has been seldom studied, even though BLEVE has been source of many research works in the past decades. However, emergency responders have been asking questions the risk and consequences of a BLEVE on a bridge and other critical infrastructures for a while, with no answer so far. Moreover, a tank truck accident in Bologna in August 2018 has shown that bridge collapse may result from such scenario. This paper presents the experimental work done with a small scale apparatus reproducing realistic BLEVE failure with a cylindrical tube. Load cells were placed under the base plate holding the tube to measure the local ground force generated by the explosion. Forces from 10 kN to 55 kN were measured for a 50 mm diameter tube with 300 mm length failing at pressures from 10 to 32 Bar. The ground force signals are interpreted together with the imaging and internal pressure signal. The synchronization between violent boiling, repressurization in the vessel and strong ground force is clear through this comparison. Different ground force signals were observed depending on the fill level and weakened length of the tube. The maximum ground force and impulse vary almost linearly with failure pressure and liquid fill level. It is less clear for the influence of weakened/opening length of the tube. More data is required to conclude on this parameter influence.
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Submitted on : Thursday, March 4, 2021 - 9:38:36 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, June 29, 2021 - 8:58:49 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Saturday, June 5, 2021 - 6:23:59 PM

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R. Eyssette, F. Heymes, A.M. Birk. Ground loading from BLEVE through small scale experiments: experiments and results. Process Safety and Environmental Protection, Elsevier, 2021, 148, pp.1098-1109. ⟨10.1016/j.psep.2021.02.031⟩. ⟨hal-03158570⟩

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