Insensitive Munitions and Ageing

Authors:

  • Sten E Nyholm

Publish date: 2009-12-28

Report number: FOI-R--2874--SE

Pages: 25

Written in: English

Keywords:

  • insensitive ammunition
  • IM
  • ageing

Abstract

Insensitive munitions are less prone to inadvertent ignition by exterior stimuli such as fire, bullet impact or fragment impact than older munition types. Hence, insensitive munitions are safer to store and to use in weapons and on platforms. However if the insensitivity properties change when the munitions are ageing, the munitions may become significantly less safe to store and use, something which may lead to enhanced hazards and serious accidents. In order to maintain the operational and logistic advantages with IM, the influence of ageing of IM must be addressed, and dedicated testing and surveillance procedures need to be developed. This report contains a literature survey of ageing aspects of insensitive munitions and consists of three main parts. First a short list of munitions incidents and accidents in Sweden is presented and compared to U.S. accidents. Then the ageing of munitions and energetic materials is reviewed, followed by a part on testing and analysis of IM properties.

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