The energy spectra of protons and light nuclei produced by the interaction of 4He and 20Ne projectiles with Al and U targets have been investigated at incident energies ranging from 0.25 to 2.1 GeV per nucleon. Single fragment inclusive spectra have been obtained at angles between 25° and 150°, in the energy range from 30 to 150 MeV/nucleon. The multiplicity of intermediate and high energy charged particles was determined in coincidence with the measured fragments. In a separate study, fragment spectra were obtained in the evaporation energy range from 12C and 20Ne bombardment of uranium. We observe structureless, exponentially decaying spectra throughout the range of studied fragment masses. There is evidence for two major classes of fragments; one with emission at intermediate temperature from a system moving slowly in the lab frame, and the other with high temperature emission from a system propagating at a velocity intermediate between target and projectile. The high energy proton spectra are fairly well reproduced by a nuclear fireball model based on simple geometrical, kinematical, and statistical assumptions. Light cluster emission is also discussed in the framework of statistical models. NUCLEAR REACTIONS U(20Ne,X), E=250 MeV/nucl.; U(20Ne,X), U(α,X) E=400 MeV/nucl.; U(20Ne,X), Al(20Ne,X), E=2.1 GeV/nucl.; measured σ(E,θ), X=p, d, t, 3He,4He. U(20Ne,X), U(α,X), E=400 MeV/nucl.; U(20Ne,X), E=2.1 GeV/nucl.; measured σ(E, θ), Li to O. U(20Ne,X), U(12C,X), E=2.1 GeV/nucl.; measured σ(E, 90°), 4He to B. Nuclear fireballs, coalescence, thermodynamics of light nuclei production.