Nanoporous silicon films on a silicon wafer were loaded with sodium perchlorate and initiated using illumination with infrared laser pulses to cause laser thermal ignition and laser-generated shock waves. Using Photon Doppler Velocimetry, it was determined that these waves are weak stress waves with a threshold intensity of 131MPa in the silicon substrate. Shock generation was achieved through confinement of a plasma, generated upon irradiation of an absorptive paint layer held against the substrate side of the wafer. These stress waves were below the threshold required for sample fracturing. Exploiting either the laser thermal or laser-generated shock mechanisms of ignition may permit use of pSi energetic materials in applications otherwise precluded due to their environmental sensitivity.