Shock Testing

Just when you thought you had a bad day with your equipment … actually this was a good day for the guys who had their equipment being tested on the floating shock barge.

I was out at the shock and vibration facility getting testing done on one of my underwater cable assemblies when I noticed they were putting the explosives in the lake for this shot. It was the smaller of two that I was around for and only got a video of this one. The next day they set one off that rattled the building that I was in next to the lake!

The company testing their stuff had a bad day for that one :slight_smile: A lot of the steel mounting plates sheared and messed up some of their equipment. Lucky for me I didn’t have to deal with explosive test, only small stuff but it still gave me chills to watch a weight slam into the support table holding my cable and accelerate it to 400+ Gs in a blink of the eye.

So the morale of the story is … the next time you are having a bad hair day with your ROV, your stuff could be on some barge with a bunch of explosives next to it waiting to find EVERY loose component that you have and to start shearing your parts.


shock-trail-1 (3.83 MB)


Nice video! I’m sure that was cool to see in person.


It was cool! In fact I edited that line out of the end of the video and shortened stuff to be able to post it. I had said “Yeap, that was cool!”

This was the first time that I ever got to see what they did for the various shock and vibration test. You can read the military standards all day long and it is just paper, and even the video is just that but to get to see all of the different types of test first hand gave me a whole new perspective to how I am going to design stuff in the future.

I was really happy that my test fixtures that I had to make to couple my cable up for various test survived too. I had really never put any thought into them because I was focused on the cable itself. I got lucky since I am paranoid about stuff dying and I built some robust items.

I really wished I had seen the next shot and some BIG ones they might be doing next week. The lake is actually an old rock quarry that they had to abandon because of ground water issues and a hurricane that pretty much turned it into a deep man made lake.

I think the quarry might be a cool place to test some ROVs too. It is about couple of hundred or so feet deep and pretty large. They did some SONAR mapping of it so they could do underwater explosive testing on a scaled down model of a submarine in it once.