Guide to Blast-Resistant Design

Many types of structures need to be built with a strategy for mitigating explosive blast-related damage. Depending on the situation, a building’s exterior or interior may be more at risk of damage due to blast-induced threats and require specialized design. As a modular building design innovator, Module X Solutions develops secure, protective designs for the world’s most severe and challenging threats. In this blog post, we will identify blast-resistant design characteristics and discuss their benefits and applications.

What Is Blast-Resistant Design?

Calumet Superior, WI BRM option 2A blast-resistant design incorporates damage mitigation strategies into a structure, with the aim of protecting people and equipment in the event of an accidental or intentional explosion. Blast-resistant design begins at a structure’s concept stage and, after careful modeling, material selection, and other steps, delivers an architecturally appealing structure with improved blast resistance.

Blast-resistant building design considers criteria such as:

  • Strategies to mitigate risk and isolate the blast, as well as the best types of engineering materials
  • How certain materials behave under blast overpressure and excessive loading
  • The functionality and safety of the structure after an explosion

Additionally, blast-resistant building designs must be developed with consideration for certain regulations and guidelines. For example, while there is no global standard for blast-resistant structures, there are recommended best practices. The American Petroleum Institute (API) provides several guidelines, such as API 752 and API 753. The American Society of Civil Engineers also provides guidance for blast-resistant designs (ASCE 41088).

Also referred to as Blast Resistant Modules, a blast-resistant building is a reinforced structure specially designed to reduce harm to the personnel and equipment it contains in the event of an explosion. These structures are particularly common within petrochemical plants, chemical processing, and manufacturing facilities, as well as defense sites and oil refineries.


What Are the Benefits and Applications of Blast-Resistant Design?

A typical building design does not factor potential blast impacts into its development. In general structures, if an explosion were to occur, the blast could produce a greater overload than the structure was designed to withstand. This can lead to fatalities, severe building damage, significant adverse health effects, and many other negative consequences.

In comparison, blast-resistant design provides numerous benefits, including:

  • Physical assets including staff and equipment are protected in case of a catastrophic event.
  • A company’s liability is reduced due to the measures it took in advance to keep the workplace safe.
  • Lost time spent retrieving tools or other equipment is reduced.
  • Time spent exposed to hazards is reduced.
  • Modular buildings offer flexibility to add additional sections or stack to save space.
  • Modular blast-resistant designs provide mobility to be moved after the structure has been placed.
  • Structures can be built off-site and transferred to the final location for assembly.

Blast-resistant modules provide security and protection for a large number of highly versatile applications, including:

  • Ops shelters
  • Control rooms
  • Guard shacks and security buildings
  • Changing rooms and restrooms
  • Lunchrooms and break rooms
  • Permit buildings
  • Labs with fume hoods
  • Water labs
  • Process buildings

Blast-Resistant Design Solutions from Module X Solutions

Module X Solutions provides improved blast-resistant building design using proprietary technology. The X-Gap Deformation Barrier engineered solution is the most protective and safe design available in the marketplace. X-Gap prevents furniture, equipment, and other objects inside a structure from becoming projectiles in the event of an explosion.
The Module X Solutions standard for projectiles can be applied to any building we manufacture. We can also provide new projectile engineering to meet even the most challenging design requirements. As an industry leader in protective shelter design, Module X Solutions meets or exceeds all relevant design parameters, including:

  • ASCE 2010 2nd Edition Design of Blast Resistant Buildings in Petrochemical Facilities
  • API RP-752/753
  • NFPA 70 – NEC
  • NFPA 496 – Electrical Classification
  • IBC 2021

Gain Superior Protection With Custom Blast-Resistant Modules

There are many situations where a structure encounters the threat of a potential blast, either from inside or outside the building. Developing solutions for the unique criteria of each site is critical in protecting human life as well as expensive equipment in these situations. Good blast-resistant design incorporates projectile engineering and results in a modifiable, versatile structure with strong protection capabilities in the event of a catastrophic event.

Module X Solutions is a leader in blast-resistant design and develops customized solutions from our 700,000 sq. ft. manufacturing facility. We serve an extensive selection of demanding industries, providing structurally superior protective products. To learn more, contact us today, or get started on your solution by requesting a quote.

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