It is well established from numerous documented cases of bomb blasts that, under certain conditions (determined by the amount and proximity of explosive), the transmitted shock wave and associated overpressure generated by the detonation of an explosive device can cause critical and fatal injuries to the thorax, e.g., “blast lung.” As such injuries tend to be internal and thus difficult to detect, there has been considerable debate in recent years on the significance of the blast overpressure injury in the context of demining/mine clearance compared to more visible injuries, such as, amputation of extremities, fragmentation wounds and blindness. A wide range of personal protective ensembles are currently deployed in the field, incorporating disparate stackings of materials over the thoracic region.
Nerenberg, J.; Makris, Aris; and Kleine, H.
"The Effectiveness of Different Personal Protective Ensembles in Preventing Injury to the Thorax from Blast-Type Anti-Personnel Mines,"
Journal of Conventional Weapons Destruction: Vol. 4
, Article 10.
Available at: http://commons.lib.jmu.edu/cisr-journal/vol4/iss2/10