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Title: Use of surface snow sampling to estimate the quantity of explosives residues resulting from land mine detonations
Authors: Jenkins, Thomas F.
Ranney, Thomas A.
Miyares, Paul H.
Collins, Nicholas H.
Hewitt, Alan D. (Alan Dole)
Keywords: Composition B
Explosives residues
Land-mine detection
Surface sampling
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: ERDC/CRREL ; TR-00-12.
Abstract: A PMA-2 antipersonnel land mine from Yugoslavia was detonated with an M6 blasting cap on a snow-covered range at Camp Ethan Allen Training Site, Jericho, Vermont. The main charge of the PMA-2 was 100 g of TNT with 13 g of RDX as a booster. The surface that was impacted by the detonation (381 m2) was visually identified by the presence of soot, which was produced by detonation of TNT from the main charge of the PMA-2. A total of 15 surface snow samples (each 2.3 m2) was collected using an unpainted aluminum snow shovel and analyzed for explosives residues by gas chromatography with an electron capture detector (GC-ECD). These samples accounted for 7.3% of the impacted surface. The major explosives-related chemicals (ERC) detected were TNT and RDX. 2,4-DNT was detected in the detonation crater, apparently because of the presence of propellant from previous range use, and at low concentration in several of the surface snow samples. The surface concentrations of TNT were similar to those resulting from a buried mine. The rate of transformation of TNT is rapid, however, and concentrations would rapidly decline without a continuing source of TNT. Thus the residues resulting from a mine detonation do not seem to pose a serious background problem for the use of chemical sensors to detect the presence of buried land mines. The utility of conducting these types of tests on a snow-covered range was demonstrated.
Description: Technical Report
Appears in Collections:Technical Report

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