Controlling the electrostatic discharge ignition sensitivity of composite energetic materials using carbon nanotube additives

Kade H. Poper, Eric S. Collins, Michelle L. Pantoya, Michael A. Daniels

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Powder energetic materials are highly sensitive to electrostatic discharge (ESD) ignition. This study shows that small concentrations of carbon nanotubes (CNT) added to the highly reactive mixture of aluminum and copper oxide (Al+CuO) significantly reduces ESD ignition sensitivity. CNT act as a conduit for electric energy, bypassing energy buildup and desensitizing the mixture to ESD ignition. The lowest CNT concentration needed to desensitize ignition is 3.8vol.% corresponding to percolation corresponding to an electrical conductivity of 0.04S/cm. Conversely, added CNT increased Al+CuO thermal ignition sensitivity to a hot wire igniter.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)428-432
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Electrostatics
Volume72
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2014

Keywords

  • Aluminum
  • Electrostatic discharge
  • Energetic materials
  • Ignition
  • Thermites

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