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Explosion of a bomb or shell in the atmosphere.


(Military) the explosion of a bomb, shell, etc, in the air



the explosion of a bomb or shell in midair.


An explosion of a bomb or projectile above the surface as distinguished from an explosion on contact with the surface or after penetration. See also types of burst.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.airburst - an explosion in the atmosphere
blowup, detonation, explosion - a violent release of energy caused by a chemical or nuclear reaction
References in periodicals archive ?
The 71-page report 'Rain of Fire: Israel's Unlawful Use of White Phosphorus in Gaza' by Human Rights Watch, discloses that Israeli security forces frequently use white phosphorus in 155mm artillery shells to fire airbursts in and near populated areas.
A are the "hang and squeeze" method, in which condoms are filled with water and squeezed for leaks and airbursts.
The SMM camera in government-controlled Avdiivka (17km north of Donetsk) recorded 60 undetermined explosions on the evening and night of 4-5 November, and 12 undetermined explosions, six airbursts and three projectiles fired from west to east during the day on 5 November.
On that day, airbursts of profanity sleeted over the sandbank, sending prawns scuttling into deeper water, scattering feeding shorebirds, and scything through the salt flats flora like a claymore mine.
They had come under machine-gun and mortar fire, some of them airbursts, and the braver of their adversaries were creeping into grenade range.
A great deal of work remains to be done, for example, in computer modelling of impact effects, how airbursts differ from ground strikes, kinetic versus explosive deflection strategies and much more," Gerhard Drolshagen, of the SSA Programme Office said.
A Sandia press release on the monograph quotes Boslough to say, "There's no plausible mechanism to get airbursts over an entire continent.
Additionally, the revolution in accuracy permits planners to target an enemy's hardened nuclear sites using low-yield weapons, set to detonate as airbursts, thereby vastly reducing fallout and collateral damage.
Much like the explosion over the Tunguska region of Siberia in 1908, such airbursts might not have left any craters, but they could still have had devastating local or regional effects.
Tunguska-sized airbursts would be expected to happen about once every 500 years, says Bland.
Protect yourself from airbursts, mortar rounds and small arms fire.
Remarkably, airbursts with the energy of the Hiroshima nuclear blast occur somewhere around the world once every few years to a decade yet go essentially unnoticed, except by the military satellites and rarely by fishermen on the sea or hunters in remote areas.