By S. Fordham
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Additional info for High Explosives and Propellants
Explosives so mixed are usually less sensitive but have improved resistance to moisture. Cartridging of TNT explosives is usually carried out with screws of the auger type with large open flutes. For blasting operations the filling is into pre-formed paper shells, which are afterwards dipped in wax. TNT explosives are also often used for larger charges employed in seismic prospecting and in this case are usually filled into tins to give complete protection against water even under hydrostatic pressure.
It can also be used for cartridging semi-gelatine explosives. Slurry Explosives Plants for the manufacture of slurry explosives vary considerably from the simplest to fully automated. A simple plant for example can consisj of a jacketed ribbon mixer; a hot nitrate solution is first made and the other solid ingredients and gelling agent are mixed in. Finally the cross-linking agent and any sensitisers are added. The mixture is immediately transferred to plastic bags or cartridges and it is in these that the actual cross-linking and cooling takes place.
In practice, the maximum density usefully achieved is about 1 -25 and this with relatively dense combustibles means a nitroglycerine content of 15-20%. If either the ammonium nitrate or the combustible available is not of high density, increased quantities of nitroglycerine may be necessary. As with powder explosives, alluminium may be added to give extra power, although this is not necessarily economic. An explosive designed as just stated would give very satisfactory results for many purposes when used in dry or almost dry conditions.