Geological Covering Materials for Deep Underground Installations

by Samuel M. Genensky, Robert L. Loofbourow


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An examination of some twelve geological configurations in the continental U.S. (including Alaska) which may be suitable for the construction of large underground installations and at the same time possess the ability to attenuate blast waves generated by a ground-burst nuclear weapon. The study indicates that although it is advisable to construct large subterranean installations in hard, competent (i.e., self-supporting) rock, such geological media as uncompacted rock offer interesting alternatives. In addition, a possible method of protection from blast waves in the high-frequency range, beyond that provided by the natural overburden, is suggested.

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