Melting+Explosion+Beam Tracking?

Hi! I’ve been posting here for help with a project I’ve been working on. I’ve rather had to dive into the deep end of blender and pull myself to the top to keep getting air!

Basically, I’m simulating a missile being struck by an aerial laser. That part is done, but the tricky part is showing the effects the laser will have on the metal surface of the missle. I’m at an utter loss as to how to continue. I know basically what has to happen. That is, the metal heats, melts, eventually forms a hole and the missle colapses upon itself, drops and explodes, but I have NO idea how to do this using blender.

All the animation done in this project so far has been done using IPO curves from key locations.

I thought, perhaps that I could use vertex animation, but every time I try, all it does is morph the mesh for the duration of the animation, I also thought for the melting that I could use particles? And maybe a path animation? But I also cannot figure out how to make the laser beam track the missile after it has intersected.

Any help would be really really welcome.

Thanks!

~Ashley

do a search for “cutting through metal” tutorial.
or
i think there was one on the old blender site.
go to the tutorial list in the thread on top of the blender general forum and have a look.

it had particles with an ipo so the went from white hot to red etc. it might fit your needs

Yeah ^.^ I’ve been looking at that tutorial and drawing ideas from it, but that tutorial doesn’t really show any melting of the metal. just heating. I need to show melting and then the explosion. Which has me pretty puzzled.