Chemical Explosives Classified

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According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, explosives occur when a loud and violent release of energy takes place, causing the break up and shock of any nearby materials. Explosives were first introduced from a scientific point of view in the 1840’s when a popular substance known as black powder served as a convenient bullet for the use of guns and also fireworks (Shu, 2012). When realization struck that the amount of smoke being released from the black powder was far too extreme, a new method of the same uses was needed to cause less strain and less physical damage. Explosives can be classified as chemical explosives or commercial chemical products, which are used only for nonexplosive functions (Akhavan, 2004). To understand chemical explosions, one must master the skill of recognizing and classifying. Akhavan (2004), a professor of Explosives Chemistry and head of the Center of Defense Chemistry at the University of Southampton, stated that a bulk of the explosives known as chemical explosives contain oxygen, nitrogen and other oxidizable elements, such as hydrogen and carbon. In many cases, the oxygen in the reaction is attached to nitrogen creating NO, NO_2, NO_3, etc. (Akhavan, 2004). When these reactions occur, the nitrogens and oxygens split and reunify with the carbon and hydrogen ions known most widely as fuel components. In the duration of the reaction, masses of heat and energy are discharged creating a shock to the surroundings of the reaction. The Federation of American Scientists (1998), (FAS), states that the heat and shock released in a chemical explosion make chemical explosives either exothermic or endothermic. As known by the Law of the Conservation of Energy, energy is not created nor destroyed, only conve... ... middle of paper ... .... (n.d.). Retrieved April 21, 2014, from https://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/navy/docs/es310/chemistry/chemstry.htm Shu, R. (n.d.). Explosive Chemistry. Retrieved April 4, 21, from http://dujs.dartmouth.edu/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/12s-explosive- chemistry.pdf Explosive. (2009, July 01). Retrieved April 21, 2014, from http:// science.howstuffworks.com/dictionary/chemistry-terms/explosive-info.htm Military. (n.d.). Retrieved April 21, 2014, from http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/munitions/explosives.htm Hallowell, S. (2008, January 14). Explosives Trace Detectives. Retrieved April 25, 2014, from http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/2008hls/Breakouts/502AMonday/TS19/LAStHoltracev2b.pdf Common Explosives - 2014 Counterterrorism Calendar. (n.d.). Retrieved April 27, 2014, from http://www.nctc.gov/site/technical/common_explosives.html

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