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Title: Identity and distribution of residues of energetic compounds at military live-fire training ranges
Authors: Defence Research Establishment Valcartier
Science and Technology Corporation (Hampton, Va.)
Envirostate (Firm)
University of New Hampshire
Environmental Laboratory (U.S.)
Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (U.S.)
Jenkins, Thomas F.
Thiboutot, Sonia, 1962-
Ampleman, Guy, 1954-
Hewitt, Alan D. (Alan Dole)
Walsh, Marianne E.
Ranney, Thomas A.
Ramsey, Charles A.
Grant, Clarence L.
Collins, Charles M.
Brochu, Sylvie
Bigl, Susan R.
Pennington, Judith C.
Keywords: 2,4-DNT
Demolition ranges
Hand grenade ranges
Training ranges
Anti-tank ranges
Firing ranges
Military installations
Energetic compounds
Artillery ranges
Impact areas
Bombing ranges
Firing points
Live fire
Soil pollution
Range management
Environmental management
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: ERDC TR ; 05-10.
Description: Technical Report
Abstract: Environmental stewardship of military training ranges is an important objective of the Department of Defense. Therefore, an understanding of the explosives residues resulting from military training with various weapon systems is critical to range managers. A series of field sampling experiments was conducted at 27 military firing ranges in the United States and Canada to provide information on the identity and distribution of energetic munitions constituents. Different types of ranges were studied, including hand grenade, antitank rocket, artillery, bombing, and demolition ranges. Both firing points and impact areas were studied. Energetic compounds (explosives and propellants) were determined and linked to the type of munition used and the major mechanisms of deposition. At impact areas, the largest deposition of residues of energetic compounds is due to low-order detonations, or, in some cases, munitions that split open upon impact. The major residue deposited and its distribution varies for different types of ranges based upon the composition of the high explosive present in the warheads of the rounds fired at that type of range. For antitank range impact areas, the major residue present is HMX from the octol explosive used in the M72 66-mm LAW rockets. At artillery range impact areas, the major residues are TNT and/or RDX from the military-grade TNT and Composition B used in warheads of artillery and mortar rounds. Residues are very heterogeneously distributed at artillery range impact areas and can be described as randomly distributed point sources. RDX and TNT are the major residues at hand grenade ranges and their distribution is less heterogeneous due to the large number of individual detonations in a smaller area that further disperses the residues over the surface and at shallow depths. TNT is the major energetic compound detected at bombing ranges due to its presence in tritonal, the most common explosive used in bombs. RDX is the most common energetic compound at demolition ranges due to its presence as the major component of C4 demolition explosive. NG and 2,4-DNT are also frequently detected at demolition ranges as a result of the disposal of excess propellant. Once dissolved, RDX and HMX are the most mobile of the organic energetic compounds deposited on ranges, both vertically in the soil profile and horizontally across the surface. Results of these studies demonstrate that the potential for range contamination is specific to range activities. Large areas of training ranges are uncontaminated, while residues in smaller areas, e.g., those around targets, firing points, and low-order detonations, are potentially significant. Range managers can, therefore, limit management practices for residue control to specific areas and specific types of firing activities.
Rights: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Appears in Collections:Technical Report

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