NATO SPS Project 984595
"Protection of Underground Structures from Fuel Cloud Explosions"
A system of protection from fuel cloud explosion in underground facilities was designed and tested within the project framework. The design concept of the protective system was developed based on a quantitative hazard analysis of fuel cloud explosion effects on the underground structure. Design parameters of the system were defined according to the results of the study of shock wave attenuation and fire extinguishing in water mist. The following are the key functions of the protective system: i) prevention of fuel cloud invasion into the tunnel (or, in the case of fuel cloud penetration in the tunnel, the exclusion of its explosion or the threat of deflagration in the tunnel) and ii) suppression of shock waves generated by a fuel cloud explosion at the tunnel entry. The prototype of the system was manufactured and then tested in the underground facility of the LEPL GrigolTsulukidzeMining Institute in real blast conditions. The results showed that the system has significant advantages thanks to its efficiency, quick response and reliability.
The findings of the research were presented at twelve international conferences and full papers were published in fourteen international journals. NATOChannel.tv produced a video clip about the Project results (www.youtube.com/watch?v=8s0D-Ns28fQ), which has over 2800 views. Four young scientists working for the Project had internship in research centres in the US and Europe. Scientific contacts with foreign researchers were established. The Project funding was used for equipping the experimental base with state-of-the-art equipment. According to experts, it is one of the best facilities in Europe for studying blast effect.