Sciencemadness Discussion Board

Hexamethylene explosive?

nitro-genes - 27-7-2006 at 12:56

When I was looking for some energetic hexamethylenetetramine deratives with very low melting points (ionic liquids ;)) I found this information about an old explosive formulation in PATR:

Hexamethylenetetramine Explosive. A powerful solid explosive was claimed to have been prepd by oxidizing hexamine with a solution of hydrogen peroxide, treating the resulting product with nitric acid and then, reoxidizing with H2O2 (Ref ‘1).
After drying, this was mixed with AN, castor oil and turpentine (Ref 2) ~e/s: 1) E. I.d’AsteCk, USP 1835697, (1931) & CA 26, 1125 (1932) 2) L.E. d’Asteck CaIlerY, BrtitP41 5900 (1934) & CA 29, 929 (1935)

Anybody an idea what could be the resulting compound(s)? :)
I reckon it doesn't involve the nitration of HMTD though...

[Edited on 27-7-2006 by nitro-genes]

Rosco Bodine - 27-7-2006 at 17:06

The Callery HMTD complex ? patents


A related hexamine dinitrate patent
by the same inventor


See also the Asteck patent


nitro-genes - 28-7-2006 at 04:45

From patent GB397600:

In carrying the invention into effect, anhydrous ammonia gas is caused to bubble into a cooling tank containing 100 parts by weight of an aqueous, commercial solution of formaldehyde ( 40 % solution) When the ammonia and soluRedhill: Printed for His Majesty's Stationery lPrice 11-l tion have reacted 400 parts by weight of ammonium nitrate are dissolved in the contents of the tank and, thereafter, 25 parts by weight of nitric acid (s g 1 42) are added and this addition is followed by the addition of 50 parts by weight of a 30 % solution of hydrogen peroxide.

H2C=O +NH3 --> hexamin
Hexamin + nitric acid --> HDN
HDN + H2O2 --> HMTD

So whats the deal with the AN? Does it copreciptitate somehow allong with the HMTD or does it form a double salt?! That would be really new to me... :) And what double salts would be possible than? Mono/mono, di/mono... etc?

Anyhow, the properties of the resulting explosive are changed considerably compared to straight HMTD since the same patent mentions centrifuge-drying and use as a safety explosive. Hard to imagine from a composition containing an unstable compound like HMTD unless a real and more stable double salt is formed...

Rosco Bodine - 28-7-2006 at 10:18

The Callery patents were first mentioned by me at E&W in a long thread about HMTD there , towards the bottom of the following page

It would seem possible that there is some sort of complex salt formation , but I have not experimented with this interesting possibility . This is one of the many things I have mentioned , hoping others who have time would experiment further and discover what is the story on this . Somebody ought to archive Rosco's posts and
write a small book of unfinished experiments :D The problem for me is I was born without a staff , no secretary , no lab assistant , no groundskeeper , no
driver/mechanic , no housekeeper , no cook , no butler .....
it's awful I know , but being so deprived has most of my time for experiments tied up doing mundane tasks so all the neat stuff I would like to investigate I never have the time to do for being otherwise occupied with mundane tasks . Oh the pain .....such a cruel world :P