1 sudden loud bursting/exploding
ADJ. almighty, big, deafening, enormous, huge, loud, major, massive, powerful, serious, tremendous, violent | minor, small | muffled There was a muffled explosion somewhere on their right. | distant The floor shook with a distant explosion. | controlled | test a nuclear test explosion | accidental | bomb, chemical, gas, mine, volcanic | atomic, nuclear | terrorist | political, social (figurative) The shock waves of this political explosion engulfed the whole of Europe.
VERB + EXPLOSION cause, set off, trigger The build-up of gas caused a small explosion. | carry out Bomb disposal experts carried out a controlled explosion on the suspect package. | hear | prevent
EXPLOSION + VERB come, happen, occur, take place The explosion came 20 minutes after a coded warning to the police. The explosion occurred just after midday. | shake sth The explosion shook nearby homes. | destroy sth, rip through sth, wreck sth A massive explosion ripped through the chemical works. | injure sb, kill sb | echo A loud explosion echoed round the valley.
PREP. in an/the ~ 3 people were injured in the explosion.
2 sudden large increase
ADJ. sudden | veritable In the 1860s a veritable explosion of major scientific publications took place. | population | information trying to keep up with the information explosion | price, wage
EXPLOSION + VERB occur, take place
PREP. ~ in a sudden explosion in the number of students | ~ of an explosion of interest in learning Japanese