Taking A Closer Look At The Power Of Pressure Cooker Bombs

Following the tragic events at the Boston Marathon, INSIDE EDITION takes a close look at how deadly pressure cooker bombs can be.

How did the bombs at the Boston Marathon wreak so much carnage?

INSIDE EDITION went to the wide-open desert of New Mexico to examine the awesome power of the pressure cooker bomb.

A device similar to the ones that blew up in Boston was built by bomb experts from New Mexico Tech.

VP for Research Van Romero explained the devastating effects of flying shrapnel to INSIDE EDITION producer Daela Cetrone. He said, "It's not likely to kill a lot of people, but it will throw fragments a long way. The types of injuries it causes are cuts and severed limbs.

Our interest here is explaining why it proved so devastating.
The pot was filled with metal nuts.Once assembled, the bomb is carefully placed on the ground.We set up cameras behind protective shields to record the explosion, then head for shelter in this bunker, about a quarter of a mile away.

A deafening explosion rocked the desert. On high-speed film, the detonation can be seen as a giant fireball and bits of shrapnel flying in all directions.

A bomb expert gives the "all clear" sign, and it's safe for us to return and examine the wreckage.

A charred pot and a bent lid are all that's left of our pressure cooker bomb, but somehow, the plywood walls surrounding the bomb remain intact. Why?

Romero said "Everything shot straight up. More than likely in Boston, the bomb was placed on its side so it would shoot into the street."

That could explain why more than a dozen people lost limbs in Boston.
Believe it or not, some shrapnel from our demonstration actually hit the top of the bunker, more than 2,000 feet away.

Romero said, "While we were conducting this expermiment, we heard fragments flying over our heads! We were over a quarter mile away, 2,000 feet from ground zero. That can inflict a lot of damage."