Abstract: Using a shock tube to subject structures to shock wave loading is a safe, economical and reliable alternative to live explosive testing. The University of Ottawa shock tube testing facility is capable of simulating shock wave induced loading of structures subjected to high explosive blast. The shock tube can accurately generate shock waves with similar properties as those produced by the actual detonation of high explosives. The parameters of the shock waves generated by the shock tube are found to be a function of driver length and driver pressure. Pressure-time histories are found to be in good agreement with similar free-air detonations. Furthermore, shock waves are found to be planar at the testing frame. Blast induced testing of structural elements, such as columns, slabs and masonry walls have been subjected to shock wave induced loading. This paper outlines the parameters of shock tube induced shock waves and explores the benefits of shock tube testing over live high explosive testing.