(50b) An Investigation of the Impact of Synthesis on the Vapor Pressure and Vapor Constituents of TATP | AIChE

(50b) An Investigation of the Impact of Synthesis on the Vapor Pressure and Vapor Constituents of TATP


Baah, D. - Presenter, Tuskegee University
Mbah, J., Tuskegee University
Vahdat, N., Tuskegee University

Jonathan C. Mbah1, Debra Knot2, Nader Vahdat1, Danielle Cornett2, Jamia Gaines-Paige2 and Scott Steward2, (1)Chemical Engineering, Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL, (2) Naval Surface Warfare Center, IHEODTECHDIV, in Indian Head, MD

An Investigation of the Impact of Synthesis on the Vapor Pressure and Vapor

Constituents of TATP

Improvised explosive devices (IEDs) are a common and growing threat to human populace world over. Detecting and identifying explosives charges and IEDs are very arduous with increasing hazardous risks and task. The diverse and varying nature of IEDs poses great challenges to the methods for their detection. In order to set requirements and specifications for detection equipment and to design suitable, capable, and robust detection systems, it is pertinent to know the properties of the detected species. One property of vital importance for detection methods based on trace detection, such as sniffers or stand-off vapor detection techniques is the vapor pressure. Also of equal importance is the spectra signature of TATP. A high vapor pressure ensures an increased certainty of finding a hidden or partially enclosed explosive (or a fully enclosed explosive, encapsulated in a gas permeable casing). The enthalpy of sublimation or enthalpy of vaporization is also of importance for the modeling of explosives vapor plumes from IEDs.
This study focuses on characterization of the vapor pressure signatures generated by triacetone triperoxide (TATP) and its constituents that make up this vapor for exploitation by standoff detection technologies. Specifically, we have utilized gas chromatography/mass spectroscopy (GC-MS) to conduct vapor pressures, enthalpy of sublimation and spectra signature characterization measurements of TATP by means of direct static headspace. In addition, thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) was performed to evaluate vapor pressures and enthalpy of sublimation. Also, GC-MS was used for signature characterization by static headspace using solid phase microextraction (SPME) techniques. Any phase change, melting point and decomposition identification were studied by differential scanning calorimeter (DSC). Subsequently, a comparison of the enthalpy of sublimation from GC-MS with that obtained using TGA at specific temperature range were presented. Vapor pressure estimation using TGA and GC-MS static headspace provided viable information that may be used as a fast, simple, and safe route of vapor pressure determination of other improvised explosive materials.


This paper has an Extended Abstract file available; you must purchase the conference proceedings to access it.


Do you already own this?



AIChE Pro Members $150.00
AIChE Graduate Student Members Free
AIChE Undergraduate Student Members Free
AIChE Explorer Members $225.00
Non-Members $225.00