Elimination of Perchlorate Oxidizers from Pyrotechnic Flare Compositions
Final rept. Apr 2002-Jan 2007
NAVAL SURFACE WARFARE CENTER CRANE DIV IN
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Owing to the health threat of perchlorate contamination of groundwater, we have reformulated pyrotechnic compositions used in spectrally balanced decoy flares, as well as in red, green, and yellow signal flares so as to remove the perchlorate ingredient while still maintaining performance characteristics that meet or exceed those of the in-service devices. The perchlorate-free decoy flare composition chosen for scale-up was successful in matching the spectral ratio and infrared emission intensity of the older of two types of spectrally balanced flares. Chemical equilibrium computations have shown that it should also be possible to formulate a successful organic-fueled, perchlorate-free substitute for the newer of the two types of flares. We have also conducted extensive laboratory and prototype scale testing of perchlorate-free red flare compositions. Prototype scale test revealed a degradative aging problem with the hygroscopic calcium nitrate ingredient. We then selected a slightly modified red composition that we are performance and ignition sensitivity testing, prior to proceeding with formulation qualification, final type qualification.
- Inorganic Chemistry