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How old is "old 22lr ammo"?

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L. Boscoe
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How old is "old 22lr ammo"? Empty How old is "old 22lr ammo"?

Post by L. Boscoe 8/29/2022, 12:02 am

this is frivolous, but may have some bearing on future purchases.  I have about 300 rounds of CCI 22lr which I have been shooting at the local range in my Ruger.  I also have some recent Aquila 22lr.  I was surprised at the difference in recoil
from the old vs new-it was quite a bit more with the Aquila-is that due to the mfg, or did my 40 year old CCI get tired?  I paid
$5/100 for it.

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Post by DA/SA 8/29/2022, 12:35 am

CCI Standard Velocity is softer shooting than Aguila Standard Velocity for me as well. 

Compare the velocity of both and you will see why.

I stopped using the Aguila after one brick.
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Post by John Dervis 8/29/2022, 3:48 am

This is a very small test sample but I bought some Aguila while at Perry this year and also have some cci from 2018.  The Aguila will function a steel Marvel most of the time but the cci will not at all.  I only tried a few rounds yesterday just to see how it would do but put it away when it didn’t work.  By comparison, CMP Eley bulk pack ammo will cycle the conversion 100% of the time.  I have been using the Eley as my primary ammo for two years now and when I brought home the Aguila my first impression was that it was more powerful because it was louder. Since I’m having some intermittent cycling issues with the Aguila, I’m now thinking it’s not as strong as Eley.  Just my observation.

John

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Post by shooter1450 8/29/2022, 4:32 am

Recently purchased, within the last year or so, Aguila SE standard velocity is super sonic in all of my match rifles and it didn’t used to be. Even in my 30” barreled Martini.

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Post by Slamfire 9/5/2022, 4:37 pm

L. Boscoe wrote:this is frivolous, but may have some bearing on future purchases.  I have about 300 rounds of CCI 22lr which I have been shooting at the local range in my Ruger.  I also have some recent Aquila 22lr.  I was surprised at the difference in recoil
from the old vs new-it was quite a bit more with the Aquila-is that due to the mfg, or did my 40 year old CCI get tired?  I paid
$5/100 for it.

Shoot up old ammunition don't sit on it and expect it to get better. Forty year old ammunition is old, very old.

The shooting community is in basic denial about gunpowder aging, perferring to believe gunpowder lasts forever. It does not. And nothing good happens when gunpowder ages.


Propellant Management Guide
 
http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/land/docs/prop_guide.pdf
 
 
DEFINITION:STABILIZERS
 
Stabilizers are chemical ingredients added to propellant to prevent auto ignition during the propellant's expected useful life....
 
EXPLANATION:As nitrate ester-based propellants decompose, they release nitrogen oxides. If the nitrogen oxides are left free to react in the propellant, they can react with the nitrateester, causing further decomposition and additional release of nitrogen oxides. The reaction between the nitrate ester and the nitrogen oxides is exothermic, i.e. the reaction produces heat. The exothermic nature of the reaction creates a problem if sufficient heat is generated to initiate combustion. Chemical additives, referred to as stabilizers, are added to propellant formulations to react with free nitrogen oxides to prevent their attack on the nitrate esters in the propellant.The stabilizers are scavengers that act rather like sponges, and once they become saturated they are no longer able to remove nitrogen oxides from the propellant. At this point self-heating of the propellant can occur unabated. Once begun, the self-heating may become sufficient to cause auto ignition




When gunpowder breaks down it releases NOx, the "nitrogen oxides" mentioned above. This is a spectrum of chemicals, one of which is NO2. Nitrogen dioxide is a horrible oxider, it is that red stuff you see when you fly into LAX.  When nitrogen dioxide runs into a water molecule it turns into nitric acid gas. There are lots of water molecules in the air, and in Canada, they used to call the NOx car emissions, acid rain!



Anyway, NO2 and nitric acid gas formation in the case creates corrosion. If you see green corrosion inside the case, the gunpowder inside is really, really deteriorated and dangerous to the shooter and gun!   If you see pin hole corrosion on your cartridge cases, or are experiencing case neck cracking, the gunpowder is toast, and so are the cases.



Also, as gunpowder deteriorates the pressure curve is no longer nice and smooth, in fact, pressures go up due to "burn rate instability". A catch all term, but real. If you are experiencing over pressure indications it could be the powder in your 40 year old ammunition has deteriorated, the pressures have increases. It is a could be. And if you see evidence of corrosion, then it is for real.



Again the lifetime of gunpowder is unpredictable. US ammunition manufacturer's only warrant their ammunition for 10 years, and if you have problems with ammunition older than that, they will tell you to pound sand. Most ammunition is designed to last 20 years in cold and dry conditions, but there are recalls for much younger stuff because the gunpowder used deteriorated early.



https://www.thehighroad.org/index.php?threads/green-corrision-on-the-inside-of-loaded-ammo.898092/page-2#post-12128069
 
[USER=15888]@brickeyee[/USER]
 
 
30 Nov 2021
 
Green is usually copper corrosion.
 
Bullet jackets (AKA 'gilding metal') are NOT the exact same materiel as brass cases.
There is significantly more copper in the bullet jackets.
The slightest moisture (or other corrosive material) will create a primitive battery with tiny amounts of current flowing between the different alloys.
 
The acids used to make nitrocellulose (nitric and sulfuric) are never completely removed. The tiny amounts remaining are one of the things that determines the lifetime of the nitrocellulose.Wartime production often is left 'dirtier' than ammunition intended for long term storage. Why waste expensive solvents when the stuff is very likely to be consumed within a shorter period.
 

Long term storage of nitrocellulose powder is done under water.  Radford Army Ammunition Plant was a primary nitrocellulose facility built in the 1940s to support the war effort.  Way back in the early 1980s you could still see the outlines of the wooden buildings used for long term storage of nitrocellulose. Each was a lightly built 'log cabin' style of constriction with a basement 'swimming pool' to hold water.
The partially completed powder was placed in the basement room, and then submerged in water.
 
It was dangerous work..
Occasional explosions occurred all the way into the early 1988s from reprocessing.
 
The old stuff was around 25% nitrocellulose.
It was reprocessed to far higher level (closer to the mid 90%) to make solid rocket motors.
Ejection seats used those rocket motors.
As an EE I had a few contract jobs to try and measure, and minimize, the explosion hazard.
 
A 'cake' of 90+% nitrocellulose was about 16 inches in diameter and 8 inches thick.
I do not remember the exact weight, but it was pushing near 100 pounds.
We developed some measurement techniques that allowed for easier monitoring of the purity and relative danger.
There was not a lot left of the truck or driver when one went off accidentally during transport from one part of the factory to another.
You could hear the occasional boom in Blacksburg at Virginia Tech, a couple mountain ridges away.
Is sounded like remote thunder.
 
My pager would go off a few minutes later.
 
Time to go and figure out what the H happened.


Gunpowder waiting to be demilled was stored under water, not because water is good for gunpowder, but because it dissolves nitric acid gas and keeps the deteriorating gunpowder from autocombusting.



It is worth understanding that the old surplus on the market place was inspected by an ammunition technician and removed from inventory because the stuff was too dangerous to store, and too dangerous to issue. Ignorant Americans don’t know any better, and buy the stuff thinking it is day old bread.  And they don’t understand why the velocities they chronograph are so high, or why they are having pressure issues. Every so often someone blows up a pistol or rifle.
 
Take a look at these videos. The high velocities are not because the Turks made a magical gunpowder that pushed bullets fast with a low pressure. The high velocities these shooters are measuring are evidence of high combustion pressures due to deteriorated gunpowder.
 
Turkish 8mm Mauser Muzzle Velocity: The Fastest 7.92x57 Ever?
 
https://youtu.be/kF4A7fhYAO4
 
Ammunition Evaluation: 1941 Turkish 8mm Mauser
 
https://youtu.be/AunvMjcJPHY
 
At ten minutes 44 seconds, you see the stock cracked from firing this ammunition!
 
Ian Rants About Dumb Ammo Purchasing Decisions
 
https://youtu.be/3mDHs4hL5MI

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Post by Asa Yam 9/5/2022, 6:00 pm

Slamfire wrote:The shooting community is in basic denial about gunpowder aging, perferring to believe gunpowder lasts forever. It does not. And nothing good happens when gunpowder ages.
True, although it would be more correct to say "smokeless powder" instead of "gunpowder".  

The WW1 German Light Cruiser SMS Karlsruhe was destroyed by a spontaneous explosion of her ammo, it is possible some of it had degraded.  For more on the ship here is a link to the Wikipedia entry on her:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Karlsruhe

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Post by Slamfire 9/18/2022, 6:05 pm

Asa Yam wrote:
Slamfire wrote:The shooting community is in basic denial about gunpowder aging, perferring to believe gunpowder lasts forever. It does not. And nothing good happens when gunpowder ages.
True, although it would be more correct to say "smokeless powder" instead of "gunpowder".  

The WW1 German Light Cruiser SMS Karlsruhe was destroyed by a spontaneous explosion of her ammo, it is possible some of it had degraded.  For more on the ship here is a link to the Wikipedia entry on her:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Karlsruhe

Very interesting, going to have to remember that one.

This is another account of a capital ship exploding, most probable cause: deteriorated gunpowder.

Disaster in Harbour: The Loss of HMS Vanguard
https://www.cnrs-scrn.org/northern_mariner/vol10/tnm_10_3_57-89.pdf

HMS Vanguard  http://www.gwpda.org/naval/vanguard.htm

From Wiki:

Although the explosion was obviously a detonation of the cordite charges in a main magazine, the reason for it was less clear. There were several theories. The inquiry found that some of the cordite on board, which had been temporarily offloaded in December 1916 and catalogued at that time, was past its stated safe life. The possibility of spontaneous detonation was raised, but could not be proved. It was also noted that a number of ship's boilers were still in use, and some watertight doors, which should have been closed in wartime, were open as the ship was in port. It was suggested that this might have contributed to a dangerously high temperature in the magazines. The final conclusion of the board was that a fire started in a four-inch magazine, perhaps when a raised temperature caused spontaneous ignition of cordite, spreading to one or the other main magazines, which then exploded.

Pre WW2 capital ships were so expensive that pre WW2  armament treaties were developed to  limit the number built, not only to prevent war, but to prevent the Navy from sinking the National Budget!  As such, soon procedures were developed to ensure that deteriorated gunpowder aboard was not going to blow up a National Treasure.

The propellant management guide 


https://www.osmre.gov/resources/blasting/docs/ArmyDemilPropellantUse/ArmyPropellantManagementGuide.pdf   has a section:

CHAPTER4 NAVY GUN PROPELLANT SAFETY SURVEILLANCE 4-1.BACKGROUND.

 Technical Manual Safety Surveillance of Navy Gun  Propellant, Policy and Procedures,31August1996, is the best source for detailed information beyond the scope of this chapter.

a. The history of the Navy propellant surveillance program is very similar to that of the Army. Established at Indian Head, Maryland during the immediate post-World War I  period, the Navy program was physically and technically a virtual twin of the Army program, which was begun just months later than that of the Navy in the year 1921. The oldest physical remains of both program's early days, the large, circular propellant heat chambers, appear to be built from the same design, during the same time period (1940-1941). Neither set of chambers at Indian Head. nor at Picatinny are the“original”1920's-vintage structures, which were based on steam heated chambers which proved to be insufficiently reliable.

b. Auto ignition of propellant in the powder magazines aboard ship has caused the loss of many warships from the navies of various nations, most losses having occurred in the first few decades of the 20th century. The risk of unstable propellant aboard ship was so great that, even after more effective stabilizers were introduced during the second decade of this century, close monitoring of all the fleet stocks was considered essential. In fact, prior to 1963, each activity and ship had its own testing oven and was required to run a 65.50C surveillance test for 60 days each year on every lot of propellant in stock. Propellants in many configurations which would be considered safe for use by the Army (such as propellant loaded into fixed rounds) were and are routinely condemned and destroyed by the Navy as too hazardous to be aboard ship, where even a minor deflagration can cost the lives of the sailors and marines aboard, such as that which occurred in the powder magazine of the USS KEARSARGE, killing 10 sailors.

c. Information necessary to assure the safety of Navy propellant stocks(and the vessels upon which they are stored) is provided to the fleet as well as storage installations (Navy coastal and SMCA locations) through the monitoring and testing of all existing Navy propellants. The Navy Gun Propellant Safety Surveillance program produces this information through its two programs, the Master Sample Program and the Fleet Return Program.


The gunpowder used in large caliber weapons is slightly different in composition from rifle powder, the grains are larger, the burn rate slower, but it is all based on nitrocellulose. And it is the nitrocellulose that is breaking down, the day it leaves the factory.
This might be of interest, for the older, accelerated aging tests, where gunpowder is heated in an oven and monitored for red, nitrogen dioxide fumes.

1973 Picatinny Arsenal report AD-763-879 Prediction of  Safe Life of Propellants states

Recently the NATO countries were in need of an evaluation procedure that would assure acceptor countries that propellants received from others would have a proven chemical stability for a given period of time when stored at ambient conditions. After many stability tests were reviews and evaluated through the conduct of round robins to insure that strict analytical agreement could be realized among world wide participating laboratories, the above mentioned method for the determination of available stabilizer content was accepted, with the establishment of suitable cut-off points. It was assume that if a propellant withstood a heating period of 60 days at 65.5 ˚C., without undue depletion of available stabilizer content, then that propellant would have a proven chemical stability for 5 years storage at ambient conditions

All of the services want to remove gunpowder from their bunkers, ships, etc before the stuff becomes unstable and auto ignites, so the 20% stabilizer limit gives the Service the time to pack and ship the stuff with a reasonable expectation it will not blow up in route to the demilling facility.

If anyone lives Camp Minden Louisiana, all those kabooms you regularly hear, are due to old gunpowder and munitions going off in the facility. The Army is not going to tell anyone what is going on, but there have been kabooms that were heard 70 miles distance, and that caused a minor scandal because the munitions were piled on pallets outside!

Many of the links are now busted, but I thought it would be interesting to have a time phased account of one Minden Kaboom
 
New Information: Bunker blast at Camp Minden
By USAHM-News on October 19, 2012
 
https://usahitman.com/nibbacm/
 
6 arrested in Camp Minden explosives investigation
 
 
http://www.fox8live.com/story/22637088/la-company-managers-indicted-in-explosives-case
 
Execs accused of improperly storing explosives at Camp Minden due in court
http://www.nola.com/crime/index.ssf/2015/04/camp_minden_explosives_court.html

Camp Minden: From blast to possible burn

http://www.ktbs.com/story/28065933/camp-minden-from-blast-to-possible-burn
  
 
New Information: Bunker blast at Camp Minden
By USAHM-News on October 19, 2012
https://usahitman.com/nibbacm/
 
The following is statement from the Louisiana National Guard concerning the explosion at Camp Minden earlier this week. On Monday night the Camp Minden post security heard a loud sound which could have been a possible explosion. Subsequently, the post security physically surveyed the camp in accordance with established protocols and conferred with contractor tenants who stated that they were not able to confirm the origination of the sound.
 
Upon daylight on Tuesday morning, a Camp Minden tenant organization, Explo Inc., discovered that one of their storage areas had exploded and reported the incident to the Louisiana National Guard. Following this report, the Louisiana National Guard notified local authorities and the Louisiana State Police of the explosion in accordance with standard protocol.
 
The substance that exploded was a smokeless powder and does not pose a threat outside of Camp Minden. Explo is currently conducting clean-up operations of the site. The incident is under investigation by the LSP. The incident area is a restricted area and will remain off limits to anyone other than authorized individuals due to normal operational security and safety requirements. For questions concerning the investigation, please direct those to the Louisiana State Police.
For questions regarding the commercial operation, please direct those to Explo. For questions regarding the operations or details of the explosion, please direct those to Explo.]/i]

 
6 arrested in Camp Minden explosives investigation
 
http://www.fox8live.com/story/22637088/la-company-managers-indicted-in-explosives-case
 

This photo, released Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012 by the Louisiana State Police, shows piles of explosive powder stored at the Camp Minden industrial site that officials say were improperly housed by a company. (LSP/AP Photo)

JEFF AMY
Associated Press

The president and at least two other executives of a Louisiana explosives recycling company were among six people arrested Tuesday in the investigation of how the material was stored.

The Explo Systems employees were indicted June 10 and allowed to turn themselves in. Each is free on $50,000 bond.

Each worker faces five felony charges - unlawful storage of explosives, reckless use of explosives, failure to obtain a magazine license, failure to properly mark explosive material and failure to keep accurate inventory.

All those charges except the inventory count carry sentences of five to 10 years in prison and fines of $5,000 to $20,000. The inventory charge carries a prison sentence of two to five years and a fine of $1,500 to $10,000.

Explo Systems had a multimillion-dollar military contract to dismantle propelling charges used to fire artillery rounds. The company operated on space leased at Camp Minden, a Louisiana National Guard installation in northwest Louisiana. An explosion last October led authorities to look more closely at Explo and its facility.

An investigator discovered millions of pounds of an improperly stored propellant called M6, leading to the evacuation of nearby Doyline, the town known as the backdrop for the TV series "True Blood."

Among those arrested Tuesday were 65-year-old Explo Systems President David Fincher of Burns, Tenn.; 57-year-old vice president David Smith of Winchester, Ky.; and 67-year-old vice president of operations William Terry Wright of Bossier City, La. Also arrested were 54-year-old inventory control manager Lionel Koons and 50-year-old plant engineer Todd Dietrich, both of Haughton, La., and 43-year-old quality service manager Michael Kile of Bossier City.

In addition, the men face five counts of conspiracy, one related to each of the charges.

The company was indicted on the same charges.

Lyn Lawrence, a defense lawyer for Smith, said he hadn't seen the specifics of the indictment and declined further comment. Lawyers for Wright and Fincher said they would plead not guilty.

"We're going to fight the charges," said Ron Micotto, a Shreveport, La., lawyer representing Fincher. He said Fincher's defense would likely echo a lawsuit Explo filed against the Louisiana State Police. The suit contends the material is not within the proper jurisdiction of the state police and that M6 was not explosive in the way it was stored.

Louisiana State Police officials stripped Explo Systems of its explosives license on May 20, but the company won it back in state court in Baton Rouge earlier this month when state district court Judge Kay Bates signed a restraining order against the state police. A hearing in that case was postponed Monday.

Defense attorneys for Koons, Dietrich and Kile could not immediately be reached for comment. The men are likely to be arraigned on July 29, lawyers said.

Authorities said the M6 should have been stored in certified magazines, sometimes called bunkers, but some of it was found in boxes stacked in buildings, packed into long corridors that connect the buildings or "hidden" among trees outside. Some of the containers were spilling open, authorities said.

Authorities feared any ignition, such as lightning or a brush fire, could set off a massive chain reaction that would race through the corridors and blow up multiple buildings, threatening Doyline. Its 800 residents were put under a voluntary evacuation order for several days in December.

State police monitored the movement of the material, which took months as some of it was sold to other companies and the Guard provided additional space.

More 10 million pounds of the material was eventually stored properly and Explo relinquished its keys to the magazines at the installation. Also, state police said, about 100,000 pounds of flammable solid material and 130,000 pounds of Tritonal were moved to proper storage locations.

The Army gave Explo a $2.9 million annual contract in March 2010 to dismantle up to 450,000 propelling charges a year.

At some point, the company ran out of storage room and in early 2012 asked to lease more space at the installation, the Guard said. The company was turned down because it was about $400,000 behind on rent.
 
Execs accused of improperly storing explosives at Camp Minden due in court
http://www.nola.com/crime/index.ssf/2015/04/camp_minden_explosives_court.html
MINDEN -- A court hearing has been scheduled June 1 for the owners of a company accused of leaving more than 7,500 tons of improperly stored artillery propellant at a site leased from Camp Minden. A third Explo Systems Inc. executive is scheduled in court in August.

State District Judge Mike Craig will hear the case against David Fincher, 65, of Burns, Tennessee, and David Smith, 57, of Winchester, Kentucky, The Minden Press-Herald reported.

William Terry Wright, 59, of Bossier City is to be tried Aug. 3 before District Judge Mike Nerren.

The hearings were rescheduled because two defendants' attorneys couldn't make an April 6 date, District Attorney Schuyler Marvin said.

 The later dates were chosen so those cases would be the only ones on the docket, he said.

Explo Systems, which leased space from the National Guard's industrial site at Camp Minden, abandoned the chemicals after going bankrupt in 2013. Louisiana State Police had found them in an investigation after an explosion in October 2012 in one of Explo's leased bunkers rattled homes, shattered windows 4 miles away in Minden and created a 7,000-foot mushroom cloud.

All three men have pleaded not guilty to unlawful storage of explosives, reckless use of explosives, failure to obtain magazine licenses, failure to properly mark explosive material, failure to keep accurate inventory and conspiracy to commit each of the crimes.

Marvin said the defendants have a number of pending motions, including one to suppress some evidence and another to move the trial because of extensive media coverage. Another, he said, asks for a bill of particulars -- a court document giving more specifics than a bill of information, which simply lists the counts on which a defendant is charged.

Since the state police investigation, the propellant has been properly stored in nearly 100 magazines, or bunkers, but the stability of the material remains unknown. Studies conducted by the U.S. Army and the Environmental Protection Agency report the instability of M6 becomes more dangerous every day it sits.

A committee of experts and military officials is considering 10 proposals for what the would-be contractors say would be safe destruction. The EPA created an uproar by saying open burning was the only way to get rid of it. Locals said that would create toxic fumes.


Camp Minden: From blast to possible burn


http://www.ktbs.com/story/28065933/camp-minden-from-blast-to-possible-burn

Late October 16, 2012, an explosion rattled homes and nerves all over north Louisiana.

"I could see this white cloud rising up and red balls of fire just kind of floating up," said Cecil Hatchett the day after.

It was a bunker at Camp Minden. A month long investigation found what authorities then said was more than a million pounds of improperly stored explosives.

The public was told it needed to evacuate so the explosives could be stored properly.

“We're going to encourage the people in Doyline to leave their residence because of the safety factor,” said Sheriff Gary Sexton of Webster Parish on November 28, 2012.

Moving all of the material took longer than expected and the amount of improperly stored explosive material grew to 6 million pounds.

Officials identified it as M-6 in early December 2012, and no one had seen the owners of the company held responsible, Explo Systems.

“It is disappointing because we do want to talk to them as part of our investigation,” said Lt. Julie Lewis with the Louisiana State Police on December 4, 2012.

The company's financial issues came to light after the clean up. Explo owed Camp Minden thousands of dollars in rent and back wages to its employees.

The amount of M-6 grew to 10 million pounds, and state lawmakers wanted answers from Explo systems executives. But they were no shows to a state legislature meeting in February 2013.

The company's license was revoked in May 2013, and the explosive material was turned over to the state national guard's protection.

“I anticipate moving forward with the criminal end,” said Bossier-Webster Parishes District Attorney Schuyler Marvin on May 22, 2013. “How many people, how many individuals or corporation involved I'm not a liberty to talk about that at this point, but I do anticipate criminal charges.”

Less than a month later, six Explo officials were indicted on five different charges including conspiracy. They are David Fincher, William Wright, Michael Kile, Lionel Koons, David Smith and Todd Dietrich.

The men turned themselves in a week later. All six plead not guilty at their arraignment.

In the midst of the criminal trial process, Explo Systems filed for bankruptcy in August of 2013, With claims they owed creditors almost $3 million.

And just a few days later a Koons and Dietrich changed their plea to guilty in exchange for their testimony against three of the company's top officials. Kile also change his plea in the coming months.

After the criminal investigation was over and the trials beginning, state law makers tried to figure out who would be responsible for all of this M-6, and who would foot the bill for the clean up.

“To have to take $20-25 million out of our limited resources, from law enforcement and everywhere else that's important, to clean up someone else's mess is not the best use of tax payer money,” said then State Representative Jeff Thompson on July 16, 2014.

State and local lawmakers were in talks with Louisiana's congressional delegation to get the Army to take responsibility for the material they brought to the station when it owned Camp Minden.

And it worked. After years of resistance, the Army agreed to pay $25 million towards the clean up. The method of how it will be destroyed was left up to the EPA.

“The only one I'm aware of is the open burn,” said Maj. Gen. Glenn Curtis of the Louisiana National Guard on October 23, 2014. “Now, I'm hearing that there are other places where incineration has been used but I have not seen in writing that they have approved any other process.”

People in the area did not like the idea of an open burn, but officials were saying that was the only option. It wasn't until a December 2014 meeting here at the Minden Civic Center that anyone knew any different. That's when Dr. Brian Salvatore stood up and gave facts as to why the open burn is dangerous.

“I asked, 'Did you monitor to see how much uncombusted DNT is going?' 'Oh no we couldn't.' I said, 'Why?' 'Oh it was too hot over there. We couldn't get close enough,'” Salvatore recounted of the meeting on January 2, 2015.

DNT, or dinitrotoluene, is just one of four chemicals that make up M-6, But Salvatore says it's the worst one to be released into the air because it is a known carcinogen. The other chemicals can cause birth defects and issues for people with asthma.

Salvatore's word woke people up and a grassroots effort began.

“We've formed a group called the ArkLaTex Clean Air Network, and we're calling for a safe disposal of these explosives,” said Frances Kelley with Louisiana Progress on January 6, 2015. “We're calling on our elected officials to take their leadership and ensure a safe disposal of these explosives.”

Thousands of people have jumped on board, and the efforts so far seemed to work. The EPA placed a 90-day delay of action on the current contract process of an open tray burn, and agreed to look at other means of disposal.

Rep. Gene Reynolds of Minden said at February 2, 2015 meeting at Doyline High School the public's passion and efforts to stop the open burn has made a difference. 


The amount of munitions piled up at Camp Minden greatly exceeded the capacity of the facility and more open air explosions, of possible nuclear event tonnage,  lead to the Solomonic decision to burn them in the open air. Since the only people breathing the toxic fumes would be poor white and colored Southerner's, this was considered acceptable by the Washington DC elites.

An Explosive Crisis: EPA Pushes for Massive Munitions Burn at Louisiana's Camp Minden

https://truthout.org/articles/an-explosive-crisis-epa-pushes-for-massive-munitions-burn-at-louisiana-s-camp-minden/
 
Open Burns, Ill Winds

https://features.propublica.org/military-pollution/military-pollution-open-burns-radford-virginia/



Bombs in Our Backyard
https://projects.propublica.org/bombs/
https://www.propublica.org/series/bombs-in-our-backyard
 
Interesting post on demilling at another facility

Green is usually copper corrosion.

https://www.thehighroad.org/index.php?threads/green-corrision-on-the-inside-of-loaded-ammo.898092/page-2#post-12128069

Bullet jackets (AKA 'gilding metal') are NOT the exact same materiel as brass cases.
There is significantly more copper in the bullet jackets.
The slightest moisture (or other corrosive material) will create a primitive battery with
tiny amounts of current flowing between the different alloys.
The acids used to make nitrocellulose (nitric and sulfuric) are never completely removed.
The tiny amounts remaining are one of the things that determines the lifetime of the nitrocellulose.
Wartime production often is left 'dirtier' than ammunition intended for long term storage.
Why waste expensive solvents when the stuff is very likely to be consumed within a shorter period.

Long term storage of nitrocellulose powder is done under water.
Radford Army Ammunition Plant was a primary nitrocellulose facility built in the 1940s to support the war effort.

Way back in the early 1980s you could still see the outlines of the wooden buildings used for long term storage of nitrocellulose.
Each was a lightly built 'log cabin' style of constriction with a basement 'swimming pool' to hold water.
The partially completed powder was placed in the basement room, and then submerged in water.
It was dangerous work..
Occasional explosions occurred all the way into the early 1988s from reprocessing.
The old stuff was around 25% nitrocellulose.
It was reprocessed to far higher level (closer to the mid 90%) to make solid rocket motors.
Ejection seats used those rocket motors.
As an EE I had a few contract jobs to try and measure, and minimize, the explosion hazard.
A 'cake' of 90+% nitrocellulose was about 16 inches in diameter and 8 inches thick.
I do not remember the exact weight, but it was pushing near 100 pounds.
We developed some measurement techniques that allowed for easier monitoring of the purity and relative danger.

There was not a lot left of the truck or driver when one went off accidentally during transport from one part of the factory to another.
You could hear the occasional boom in Blacksburg at Virginia Tech, a couple mountain ridges away.
Is sounded like remote thunder.
My pager would go off a few minutes later.
Time to go and figure out what the H happened.


 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 



 


Slamfire

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Post by Asa Yam 9/27/2022, 12:30 am

Slamfire wrote:This is another account of a capital ship exploding, most probable cause: deteriorated gunpowder.

Disaster in Harbour: The Loss of HMS Vanguard
https://www.cnrs-scrn.org/northern_mariner/vol10/tnm_10_3_57-89.pdf
Found this online, looking at something else:
"Cordite and Poudre B - Why things start exploding at just the wrong time"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzCk7lc0ooQ
(WARNING:  Presentation is over one hour long.)

Summary:  Explosions may have occurred due to nitroglycerin in the propellants in question.  (I dislike the use of "explosive" in the presentation, Cordite and Poudre B are "energetics", or "propellants", not "explosives".)  Troublesome if the propellant (Cordite) is exuding nitroglycerin (ng, for short), but still bad if the stuff degraded IN the powder.  Apparently, the use of strong acids in making nitrocellulose (the other energetic in the propellant) left residues in the propellant.  Strong acids attack the ng, leading to faster degradation.  As the reaction is exothermic, the longer it is undetected, the hotter the material gets.  Since chemical reactions typically increase as temperature rises, the hotter the powder gets, the faster the breakdown.  Remember, ng is thermally and shock sensitive, so it is possible for physically separated charges to set each other off, despite there being intervening flash and thermal barriers which should stop a direct communication of thermal energy or mechanical shock.

Asa Yam

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