Electrostatic discharge sensitivity and electrical conductivity of composite energetic materials

Chelsea Weir, Michelle L. Pantoya, Gautham Ramachandran, Tim Dallas, Daniel Prentice, Michael Daniels

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Composite energetic material response to electrical stimuli was investigated and a correlation between electrical conductivity and ignition sensitivity was examined. The composites consisted of micrometer particle aluminum combined with another metal, metal oxide, or fluoropolymer. Of the nine tested mixtures, aluminum (Al) with copper oxide (CuO) was the only mixture to ignite by electrostatic discharge. Under the loose powder conditions of these experiments, the Al-CuO minimum ignition energy (MIE) is 25. mJ and exhibited an electrical conductivity two orders of magnitude higher than the next composite. This study showed a similar trend in MIE for ignition triggered by a discharged spark compared with a thermal hot wire source.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-83
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Electrostatics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2013


  • Electrical conductivity
  • Electrostatic discharge
  • Energetic materials
  • Ignition
  • Sensitivity
  • Spark


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