Learning from ISRO’s failure; making the right choice with explosives!

The use of explosives, that started in demolition, construction and mining, has made it’s way to the fields of aeronautics.

The recent failure of ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle might have resulted due to malfunctioning of the pyro mechanism. Bolts of an explosive nature are used in heat shields. As a result of their explosion, the sheet separates releasing the satellite. This is an instance where the choice of explosives could make or break a situation.

The role played by explosives in rock blasting, mining, demolition or construction is of grave importance. Different explosives are suited to different activities. A minor error in calculation of impact could lead to a lot of casualties or injury or simply loss of productivity, if the explosive is not assessed carefully.

Explosive charges are placed at strategically important locations. These take into consideration several factors which are planned out carefully by engineers. Selection and handling of explosives should be undertaken with the utmost care. Different explosives may have different characteristics and it is extremely important to take this into consideration. This is to ensure that safety and productivity are maximised.

The debris resulting out of the explosion also differs with the explosive in use. This is often discharged with a great velocity and restrictive measures to contain the debris should be ready in place. An effective study of these factors can help select the right explosives for the job and ensure that the activity performed results in success without damages to the surrounding areas.