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Title: Final report for SERDP WP-2209 Replacement melt-castable formulations for Composition B

Abstract

During this project we investigated a number of energetic materials both old and new and determined that most of them were unsuitable due to safety or sensitivity reasons. Unsuccessful coformulants include TNAZ and BNFF for volatility reasons, and DAAF due to thermal compatibility issues. The powerful explosive HMX became a focus of the work in later stages as it conferred excellent power while being commonly available in well-regulated particle size lots and is chemically compatible in the melt with many coformulants. Ultimately three preferred formulations emerged from this work: a formulation tested on large scale by ARDEC involving PrNQ and HMX; a formulation tested at ARDEC and LANL using a nitrate salt eutectic and HMX; a formulation tested at LANL using LLM-201 and HMX.

Authors:
 [1];  [1]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1358157
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-17-24143
DOE Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 45 MILITARY TECHNOLOGY, WEAPONRY, AND NATIONAL DEFENSE; Explosive

Citation Formats

Leonard, Philip, and Francois, Elizabeth Green. Final report for SERDP WP-2209 Replacement melt-castable formulations for Composition B. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1358157.
Leonard, Philip, & Francois, Elizabeth Green. Final report for SERDP WP-2209 Replacement melt-castable formulations for Composition B. United States. doi:10.2172/1358157.
Leonard, Philip, and Francois, Elizabeth Green. 2017. "Final report for SERDP WP-2209 Replacement melt-castable formulations for Composition B". United States. doi:10.2172/1358157. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1358157.
@article{osti_1358157,
title = {Final report for SERDP WP-2209 Replacement melt-castable formulations for Composition B},
author = {Leonard, Philip and Francois, Elizabeth Green},
abstractNote = {During this project we investigated a number of energetic materials both old and new and determined that most of them were unsuitable due to safety or sensitivity reasons. Unsuccessful coformulants include TNAZ and BNFF for volatility reasons, and DAAF due to thermal compatibility issues. The powerful explosive HMX became a focus of the work in later stages as it conferred excellent power while being commonly available in well-regulated particle size lots and is chemically compatible in the melt with many coformulants. Ultimately three preferred formulations emerged from this work: a formulation tested on large scale by ARDEC involving PrNQ and HMX; a formulation tested at ARDEC and LANL using a nitrate salt eutectic and HMX; a formulation tested at LANL using LLM-201 and HMX.},
doi = {10.2172/1358157},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 2017,
month = 5
}

Technical Report:

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  • Large areas across the United States are potentially contaminated with UXO, with some ranges encompassing tens to hundreds of thousands of acres. Technologies are needed which will allow for cost effective wide area scanning with 1) near 100 % coverage and 2) near 100 % detection of subsurface ordnance or features indicative of subsurface ordnance. The current approach to wide area scanning is a multi-level one, in which medium altitude fixed wing optical imaging is used for an initial site assessment. This assessment is followed with low altitude manned helicopter based magnetometry followed by surface investigations using either towed geophysicalmore » sensor arrays or man portable sensors. In order to be effective for small UXO detection, the sensing altitude for magnetic site investigations needs to be on the order of 1 – 3 meters. These altitude requirements means that manned helicopter surveys will generally only be feasible in large, open and relatively flat terrains. While such surveys are effective in mapping large areas relatively fast there are substantial mobilization/demobilization, staffing and equipment costs associated with these surveys (resulting in costs of approximately $100-$150/acre). Surface towed arrays provide high resolution maps but have other limitations, e.g. in their ability to navigate rough terrain effectively. Thus, other systems are needed allowing for effective data collection. An UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) magnetometer platform is an obvious alternative. The motivation behind such a system is that it would be safer for the operators, cheaper in initial and O&M costs, and more effective in terms of site characterization. However, while UAV data acquisition from fixed wing platforms for large (> 200 feet) stand off distances is relatively straight forward, a host of challenges exist for low stand-off distance (~ 6 feet) UAV geophysical data acquisition. The objective of SERDP SEED 1509:2006 was to identify the primary challenges associated with a low stand off distance autonomous UAV magnetometer platform and to investigate whether these challenges can be resolved successfully such that a successful UAV magnetometer platform can be constructed. The primary challenges which were identified and investigated include: 1. The feasibility of assembling a payload package which integrates magnetometers, accurate positioning systems (DGPS, height above ground measurement), obstacle avoidance systems, power infrastructure, communications and data storage as well as auxiliary flight controls 2. The availability of commercial UAV platforms with autonomous flight capability which can accommodate this payload package 3. The feasibility of integrating obstacle avoidance controls in UAV platform control 4. The feasibility of collecting high quality magnetic data in the vicinity of an UAV.« less
  • This SERDP-funded project was initiated to investigate the fate of CL-20 in the subsurface environment, with a focus on identification and quantification of geochemical and microbial reactions of CL-20. CL-20 can be released to the surface and subsurface terrestrial environment by: a) manufacturing processes, b) munition storage, and c) use with low order detonation or unexploded ordnance. The risk of far-field subsurface migration was assessed through labora-tory experiments with a variety of sediments and subsurface materials to quantify processes that control CL-20 sorption-limited migration and degradation. Results of this study show that CL-20 will exhibit differing behavior in the subsurfacemore » terrestrial environment: 1. CL-20 on the sediment surface will photodegrade and interact with plants/animals (described in other SERDP projects CU 1254, 1256). CL-20 will exhibit greater sorption in humid sediments to organic matter. Transport will be solubility limited (i.e., low CL-20 aqueous solubility). 2. CL-20 infiltration into soils (<2 m) from spills will be subject to sorption to soil organic matter (if present), and low to high biodegradation rates (weeks to years) depending on the microbial population (greater in humid environment). 3. CL-20 in the vadose zone (>2 m) will be, in most cases, subject to low sorption and low degradation rates, so would persist in the subsurface environment and be at risk for deep migration. Low water content in arid regions will result in a decrease in both sorption and the degradation rate. Measured degradation rates in unsaturated sediments of years would result in significant subsurface migration distances. 4. CL-20 in groundwater will be subject to some sorption but likely very slow degradation rates. CL-20 sorption will be greater than RDX. Most CL-20 degradation will be abiotic (ferrous iron and other transition metals), because most deep subsurface systems have extremely low natural microbial populations. Degradation rates will range from weeks (iron reducing systems) to years. Although CL-20 will move rapidly through most sediments in the terrestrial environment, subsurface remediation can be utilized for cleanup. Transformation of CL-20 to intermediates can be rapidly accomplished under: a) reducing conditions (CL-20 4.1 min. half-life, RDX 18 min. half-life), b) alkaline (pH >10) conditions, and c) bioremediation with added nutrients. CL-20 degradation to intermediates may be insufficient to mitigate environmental impact, as the toxicity of many of these compounds is unknown. Biostimulation in oxic to reducing systems by carbon and nutrient addition can mineralize CL-20, with the most rapid rates occurring under reducing conditions.« less
  • This laboratory-scale project was initiated to investigate in situ abiotic/biotic mineralization of NDMA. Under iron-reducing conditions, aquifer sediments showed rapid abiotic NDMA degradation to dimethylamine (DMA), nitrate, formate, and finally, CO2. These are the first reported experiments of abiotic NDMA mineralization. The NDMA reactivity of these different iron phases showed that adsorbed ferrous iron was the dominant reactive phase that promoted NDMA reduction, and other ferrous phases present (siderite, iron sulfide, magnetite, structural ferrous iron in 2:1 clays) did not promote NDMA degradation. In contrast, oxic sediments that were biostimulated with propane promoted biomineralization of NDMA by a cometabolic monooxygenasemore » enzyme process. Other monooxygenase enzyme processes were not stimulated with methane or toluene additions, and acetylene addition did not block mineralization. Although NDMA mineralization extent was the highest in oxic, biostimulated sediments (30 to 82%, compared to 10 to 26% for abiotic mineralization in reduced sediments), large 1-D column studies (high sediment/water ratio of aquifers) showed 5.6 times higher NDMA mineralization rates in reduced sediment (half-life 410 ± 147 h) than oxic biomineralization (half life 2293 ± 1866 h). Sequential reduced/oxic biostimulated sediment mineralization (half-life 3180 ± 1094 h) was also inefficient compared to reduced sediment. These promising laboratory-scale results for NDMA mineralization should be investigated at field scale. Future studies of NDMA remediation should focus on the comparison of this in situ abiotic NDMA mineralization (iron-reducing environments) to ex situ biomineralization, which has been shown successful in other studies.« less
  • Objectives: Project RC-1649, “Advanced Chemical Measurement of Smoke from DoD-prescribed Burns” was undertaken to use advanced instrumental techniques to study in detail the particulate and vapor-phase chemical composition of the smoke that results from prescribed fires used as a land management tool on DoD bases, particularly bases in the southeastern U.S. The statement of need (SON) called for “(1) improving characterization of fuel consumption” and “(2) improving characterization of air emissions under both flaming and smoldering conditions with respect to volatile organic compounds, heavy metals, and reactive gases.” The measurements and fuels were from several bases throughout the southeast (Campmore » Lejeune, Ft. Benning, and Ft. Jackson) and were carried out in collaboration and conjunction with projects 1647 (models) and 1648 (particulates, SW bases). Technical Approach: We used an approach that featured developing techniques for measuring biomass burning emission species in both the laboratory and field and developing infrared (IR) spectroscopy in particular. Using IR spectroscopy and other methods, we developed emission factors (EF, g of effluent per kg of fuel burned) for dozens of chemical species for several common southeastern fuel types. The major measurement campaigns were laboratory studies at the Missoula Fire Sciences Laboratory (FSL) as well as field campaigns at Camp Lejeune, NC, Ft. Jackson, SC, and in conjunction with 1648 at Vandenberg AFB, and Ft. Huachuca. Comparisons and fusions of laboratory and field data were also carried out, using laboratory fuels from the same bases. Results: The project enabled new technologies and furthered basic science, mostly in the area of infrared spectroscopy, a broadband method well suited to biomass burn studies. Advances in hardware, software and supporting reference data realized a nearly 20x improvement in sensitivity and now provide quantitative IR spectra for potential detection of ~60 new species and actual field quantification of several new species such as nitrous acid, glycolaldehyde, α-/β-pinene and D-limonene. The new reference data also permit calculation of the global warming potential (GWP) of the greenhouse gases by enabling 1) detection of their ambient concentrations, and 2) quantifying their ability to absorb IR radiation.« less