Accession Number : ADA200561

Title :   Assessment of Technical Viability of Eliminating Alcohol in the Shipment of Bulk RDX/HMX,

Corporate Author : OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LAB TN

Personal Author(s) : Pal, Bimal C. ; Gove, Ruth M.

Report Date : OCT 1988

Pagination or Media Count : 155

Abstract : It is customary in the U.S. to add isopropyl alcohol to the bulk shipment of water-wet high explosives RDX and HMX. The explosives are packed in cloth bags which are placed in plastic-lined drums. The addition of alcohol presumably prevents mildewing of cloth bags and freezing of the wet explosives in cold weather. In Europe, however, these explosives are shipped in polyethylene-lined fiber drums with not less than 15% water only, even in cold weather, following the United Nations recommendations. Water-wet frozen RDX has not proved to be any more sensitive than its unfrozen counterpart and no mildew problem has been encountered. It looks promising that the U.S. Department of Transportation regulations can be changed to permit the bulk shipment of these explosives in water only without the addition of isopropyl alcohol. The anticipated benefits are (1) annual peacetime packaging cost saving of $323,900 ($107,400 from alcohol elimination and $216,500 from replacement of cloth bags by polyethylene bags) and (2) elimination of the environmental impact of the release of isopropyl alcohol at the consumer end. (aw)

Descriptors :   *HMX, *RDX, *SHIPPING, ADDITION, ALCOHOLS, BAGS, COLD WEATHER, ELIMINATION, ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT, EUROPE, EXPLOSIVES, FABRICS, FREEZING, FUNGI, ISOMERS, POLYETHYLENE PLASTICS, PROPANOLS, REGULATIONS, UNITED NATIONS, VIABILITY, WATER.

Subject Categories : Ammunition and Explosives
      Containers and Packaging

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE