Disposal of energetic materials by alkaline pressure hydrolysis and combined techniques
A method for the disposal of nitrocellulose-contg. propellants by combined pressure hydrolysis and biol. degrdn. was developed. Results of pressure hydrolysis of different gun and rocket propellants are described. Under alk. conditions (propellant:NaOH ratio 2.3:1; temp. 150.degree.; pressure < 30 bar) biol. degradable reaction products were formed. The main products in the liq. phase were mono- and dicarboxylic acids. Dependent on the reaction conditions 30-50% of the N content of the propellants was transformed to nitrite and nitrate. The gaseous N-contg. products were N2 (16-46 %), N2O (2-23%), NOx (0-5 %). Overall 40-60% of the propellant-N was transformed to gaseous products. In the solid residues a N content between 2 and 9% was found. The residues were mostly due to additives used in propellant manufg. In the case of nitrocellulose pressure hydrolysis at <30 bar and temp. of .apprxeq. 150.degree. are sufficient.