L-048e Defining Common Potential Threat in a Munition's Service Life

July 1998

Munitions by their very nature are hazardous items, and hence the hazards that could result from a munition as a consequence of experiencing a threat environment during its life cycle will always be of concern to the user . Therefore, the designing of munitions to withstand such threats and ensure that any resulting hazard is either eliminated or minimized is a fundamental requirement which will need to be assessed. Although different national and NATO documents specify that an analysis should be completed to determine the range of threats a munition is likely to experience during its life cycle, none of these documents propose a procedure for conducting such an analysis. To cater for this deficiency, NIMIC devised a Threat Hazard Assessment Methodology Software called THAMES. The main function of THAMES being to facilitate the assessment of threats so that a programme of tests could be assigned for determining a munition's behaviour when it was exposed to these threats. Although THAMES is not a definitive solution for rationalizing all the perceived threats, as nations may have different concepts of identifying these threats, it does cover the range of threats a military munition is likely to experience during all possible life cycle situations from manufacture through operational life to final disposal.

The purpose of this paper is to present the rationale and justification used by THAMES for defining common threats that a munition may encounter during its service life, i.e. a THAMES default Threat analysis.

Author(s): 
  • Jason deW FitzGerald-Smith (Warhead Design)
  • Gerrit Mannessen (Information Systems Engineer)