Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

High Powered New Explosive Developed

Date:
October 14, 2008
Source:
Wiley-Blackwell
Summary:
Scientists have developed a novel tetranitrate ester, which is solid at room temperature, is a highly powerful explosive, and can be melt-cast into the desired shape.

The new compound contains four nitrate ester groups (–ONO2) and two nitrate groups (–NO2) bound to a total of six carbon atoms.
Credit: Wiley-VCH

Since the discovery of nitroglycerin in 1846, the nitrate ester group of compounds has been known for its explosive properties. A whole series of other nitrate esters have been subsequently put to use as explosives and fuels.

A research team led by David E. Chavez at Los Alamos National Laboratory (USA) has now developed a novel tetranitrate ester. The compound has a particularly interesting characteristic profile: it is solid at room temperature, is a highly powerful explosive, and can be melt-cast into the desired shape.

Nitrate esters are organic nitric acid compounds that can contain enormous explosive force. However, their liquid physical state makes handling very difficult. By mixing in various other components, Alfred Nobel developed dynamite, a distinctly safer and easier to handle nitroglycerine-based explosive. The only solid nitrate ester used as an explosive before is nitropenta. Because of its high melting point of about 140 C, nitropenta must be pressed into the desired form.

Chavez and his co-workers have now made another nitrate ester to give nitropenta a run for its money. Thanks to its low melting point of only about 85 C, which is well below its decomposition point (141 C), it can be melted and poured into molds, a much easier process for the production of explosive components.

The new compound contains four nitrate ester groups (–ONO2) and two nitrate groups (–NO2) bound to a total of six carbon atoms. Its crystals demonstrate the highest density found for a nitrate ester so far. Computer calculations predict that the new tetranitrate ester should have an explosive power as high as that of octogen (HMX) — currently one of the highest-performance explosives. The sensitivity of the new compound toward shocks, friction, and sparks is equivalent to that of nitropenta.

“Because of its amazing properties, the new nitrate ester opens up a unique opportunity to produce castable explosive components,” says Chavez. “In addition, it could also be used as a highly energetic softener for other explosives, and as an oxidizer component.”

The researchers also plan to use their new synthetic route for the development of other explosive materials.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Synthesis of an Energetic Nitrate Ester. Angewandte Chemie International Edition 2008, 47, 8306%u20138308 DOI: 10.1002/anie.200803648

Cite This Page:

Wiley-Blackwell. "High Powered New Explosive Developed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081010102718.htm>.
Wiley-Blackwell. (2008, October 14). High Powered New Explosive Developed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081010102718.htm
Wiley-Blackwell. "High Powered New Explosive Developed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081010102718.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

AP (July 30, 2014) British officials said on Wednesday that driverless cars will be tested on roads in as many as three cities in a trial program set to begin in January. Officials said the tests will last up to three years. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

AP (July 30, 2014) Smartphone powered paper airplane that was popular on crowdfunding website KickStarter makes its debut at Wisconsin airshow (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Driverless cars could soon become a staple on U.K. city streets, as they're set to be introduced to a few cities in 2015. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins