MICROSCOPIC THEORY OF DETONATION IN SOLIDS.
BALLISTIC RESEARCH LABS ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND MD
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A detonation theory based on a microscopic model of a solid has been developed. This was accomplished by considering known physical and chemical properties of the individual molecules in the system. The results show that molecular vibrational energies, normal lattice frequencies and activation energies are the most important parameters in the model. Molecules having low vibrational energies are easier to detonate, according to the theory, because of the ease of creation of a population inversion or hot spot in the system. A perfect crystal would be more difficult to detonate because initiation would occur at one of the faces. However, the model shows that perfect crystals of unstable solids cannot be grown. Consequently, detonation in any real crystal will be initiated in the interior near a defect. The present model explains many experimental observations that cannot be explained on the basis of older theories of detonation. For example, the microscopic theory can easily explain the occurrence of explosions during growth of crystals from solutions. Author
- Ammunition and Explosives