National Security and Defense Technologies

Simulaed jet formation model

Livermore Lab researchers have developed a tunable shaped charge which comprises a cylindrical liner commonly a metal such as copper or molybdenum but almost any solid material can be used and a surround layer of explosive in which the detonation front is constrained to propagate at an angle with respect to the charge axis.  The key to the concept is the ability to deposit a surrounding explosive layer in which the direction detonation propagation can be controlled.


Livermore researchers have developed a chip slapper consisting of a substrate with a conductive bridge layer and a flyer layer on one side of the substrate. The other side of the substrate consists of conductive pads. The bridge side of the substrate is electrically connected to the pad side of the substrate through a conductive pathway. The design and shape of the conductive bridge is manufactured using a masked physical vapor deposition process. The flyer layer is applied using a lamination technique.

k9 training aids
This technology uses AM printing methods applied to explosives materials. But unlike producing explosives parts, the explosive component is added at a low concentration of around 4 to 6 wt. %. This allows for the final form, to be labeled as a non-hazardous material. A suitable matrix (substrate) is selected that ultimately will be non-volatile (reducing improper training on contaminants) and meet the application of the user. The mixture is printed in to the shape needed cured if necessary (depending upon the matrix). If the target aid is an improvised explosive (mixture of an oxidizer and fuel), each component will be printed in separate layers with non-loaded layer in between. This will prevent mixing of the two components causing reaction. The aid is now ready for distribution to the…

3D printing involves the layer-by-layer deposition of one, or more, materials. The spatial placement of the material, if carefully controlled, can influence a desired static or dynamic property. The use of 3D printing to build complex and unique energetic components is at the center of LLNL’s architected energetic materials and structures effort. LLNL has developed several different methods for using 3D printing to create articles of energetic materials applicable to high explosives, propellants, and pyrotechnics. Methods being explored include direct printing of energetic materials as well as creating unique scaffold structures for integration with energetics.

LLNL's high fidelity hydrocode is capable of predicting blast loads and directly coupling those loads to structures to predict a mechanical response. By combining this code and our expertise in modeling blast-structure interaction and damage, along with our access to experimental data and testing facilities, we can contribute to the design of protective equipment that can better mitigate the biological effects of blast.

LLNL has investigated two types of sensors to quantify the blast environment, which will help medical personnel diagnose the severity of injuries and triage patients. Both sensor designs are small and lightweight. One new sensor uses a tiny microelectromechanical gauge and the other is an inexpensive, disposable, and easily replaceable plastic cylinder. Each…


LLNL has developed a wide band (WB) ground penetrating radar (GPR) technology to detect and image buried objects under a moving vehicle. Efficient and high performance processing algorithms reconstruct images of buried or hidden objects in two or three dimensions under a scanning array. The technology includes a mobile high-performance computing system allowing GPR array sensor data to be processed to form subsurface images which are displayed to the vehicle operator in real-time. The components of this technology, an array of radars and antennas, signal processing system, and operator interface are integrated and adaptable to utility or tactical vehicles operating on or off road.


This technology provides algorithms that accurately localize small-arm-fire by tracking bullets from high-powered weapons, automatic rifles, rocket propelled grenades (RPGs), mortars, and similar projectiles. The software integrates commercially available infrared video cameras, processes raw imagery data, detects and tracks projectiles, and determines the location of the shooters within error bounds. The technique and algorithms have been shown to be resistant to optical clutter.