Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Blowing stuff up camp

No, it's not a terrorist training center on the Afghan-Pakistani border. It's a summer camp for geeks in Rolla, Missouri:
Students with a passion for all things explosive and proof of United States citizenship pay a $450 fee that covers food, lodging and incidentals like dynamite. In the course of a week, the 22 students at this session set off a wall of fire, blasted water out of a pond, blew up a tree stump and obliterated a watermelon. They set off explosive charges in the school’s mine and finished off the week by creating their own fireworks show for their parents.

“We try to give them an absolute smorgasbord of explosives,” said Paul Worsey, a professor in the department of mining engineering at the University of Missouri-Rolla, the only university in the country that offers an academic minor in explosives engineering. More than six billion pounds of explosives are used each year in this country by civilian commercial industry for things like mining and demolition.

Dude, that would be totally sweet. (HT: Paul Dosh via email.)

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