The active blast technology developed resulted from observations of a blast test on an armoured vehicle carried out in April 2008. The high speed video of the event clearly demonstrated two basic phenomena that are characteristic of mine blasts under a vehicle:
1. The vehicle didn't move globally for about 8ms after the mine detonated, at which point the smoke and ejecta from the mine were beginning to emerge from both sides of the vehicle.
2. The shockwave from the mine passes completely over the vehicle in about 1ms.
These observations led to the conclusion that the global acceleration of the vehicle was driven primarily by the quasi-static gas pressure resulting from the gaseous decomposition products of the explosive, plus an un-quantified contribution from the ejecta.
The observed 8ms delay in the onset of significant global acceleration was seen to provide an opportunity in time to take some action to mitigate the acceleration, and some simple initial experiments carried out by Sloman & Associates Ltd. provided enough evidence of potential success to encourage the provision of some initial R&D funding from the UK MOD.
Further evolution of the active system concepts has now led to the position where commercial exploitation of the technology is possible, and this is the remit of ABBS.