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Shock and Vibration
Volume 8 (2001), Issue 3-4, Pages 229-238

Dynamic Response and Fracture of Composite Gun Tubes

Jerome T. Tzeng

US Army Research Laboratory, Weapons and Materials Research Directorate, Attn: AMSRL-WM-MB, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21005-5066, USA

Received 15 October 2001; Revised 15 October 2001

Copyright © 2001 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The fracture behavior due to dynamic response in a composite gun tube subjected to a moving pressure has been investigated. The resonance of stress waves result in very high amplitude and frequency strains in the tube at the instant and location of pressure front passage as the velocity of the projectile approaches a critical value. The cyclic stresses can accelerate crack propagation in the gun tube with an existing imperfection and significantly shorten the fatigue life of gun tubes. The fracture mechanism induced by dynamic amplification effects is particularly critical for composite overwrap barrels because of a multi-material construction, anisotropic material properties, and the potential of thermal degradation.