Have you ever watched an explosion scene in a movie? Your hero gets hit with a blastwave and tumbles off the floor, succumbing to heavy injuries.
But, is that real? Do windows really shatter when a bomb explodes nearby?
First things first. What is a blastwave?
Rocket launches and bombs are a little different, but when a bomb explodes, the surrounding area becomes quickly overpressurized.
This results in highly compressed air particles traveling faster than the speed of sound away from the blast point (blast radius).
Over time, and distance this blastwave will eventually dissipate.
In that way, the closer you are to the initial blast, the more damage you will suffer. Vice versa.
Once you are hit with a blastwave however shockwaves or “stresswaves” will continue to travel through your body.
There’s no effective defense against shockwaves.
No protective clothing can shield you from shockwaves. That’s why they’re so dangerous.
In a normal, mundane scenario, it’s unlikely that you will injure youself from watching a Space X launch.
However, do note that people do suffer injuries from bomb blasts very frequently across the world, especially in areas inflicted by conflict.
If you’re very close to the explosion site, an vacuum is spawned by the rapid outward movement of the blast, forcing all the air present in that area out.
Immediately after, the vacuum will refill itself with the surrounding atmosphere, creating a very strong pull on nearby persons or structure.
If you’re vehicle is ever near such blast, it is almost guaranteed that your side windows will shatter.
Car windows are designed to shatter in bits, but the blast will make them very dangerous.
Speaking of car window shatters, one of the most dangerous factors of a blast are sharpnel or fragmentation.
Any bits that travels with the blast in rapid speed, whether it be bits of the bomb casing, nails, screws, or other small to big objects violently blasted outward away from the explosion, are seriously dangerous.
Sharpnels are difficult to take out once it is deep inside the body. Once inside, your body is at risk for serious internal damage.
That’s why it’s important to stay informed about blastwaves, its damage potential and safety measures before coming to watch a Space X launch.
As fun as it sounds, not knowing these tips can turn fun into a nightmare quickly.
Safety is always first!