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OfflineKonnrade
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Pulverizing aluminum powder?
    #6119218 - 09/30/06 07:48 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Let's say that someone wanted to purchase aluminum powder of a mesh coarse enough to meet current US sales regulations, and then reduce it to a finer mesh to increase it's usefulness.

Is there a practical way of doing that?


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OfflineAsanteA
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Konnrade]
    #6119655 - 09/30/06 10:15 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Konnrade, you'd better be meticulous with whatever you do with the end product, micronfine aluminium is a serious hazmat.

What do you want to use it for?


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OfflineKonnrade
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Asante]
    #6119693 - 09/30/06 10:27 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

fireworks.

I want to make some flashpots... and somewhere down the road perhaps a half-dozen m80's


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OfflineAsanteA
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Konnrade]
    #6119741 - 09/30/06 10:55 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

I strongly recommend AGAINST making a micronfine flash powder. You know ten grams of such stuff will explode with a bang in open air? Too dangerous to mess with.

And by all means limit the powder weight, think of what happened to poke_smot


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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Konnrade]
    #6119747 - 09/30/06 10:57 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

mix it 1:3 w/ rusty iron dust and throwin a sparkler. make sure u get far the fuck away and don't do it over anything u don't want melted.


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OfflineKonnrade
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: iateshaggy]
    #6119770 - 09/30/06 11:08 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Wiccan_Seeker said:
I strongly recommend AGAINST making a micronfine flash powder. You know ten grams of such stuff will explode with a bang in open air? Too dangerous to mess with.

And by all means limit the powder weight, think of what happened to poke_smot




I'm fully aware of the risks involved, and would like to do so anyways. I'm familiar with safety precautions that need to be taken with sensitive explosive mixtures.

I don't know if I'd be handling anything worthy of calling "microfine" though. The stuff that united nuclear sells now seems to be a ways away from microfine. (Damn you to hell, CPSC!)

(oh, and what DID happen to poke_smot? I don't know anything about that)

Quote:

iateshaggy said:
mix it 1:3 w/ rusty iron dust and throwin a sparkler. make sure u get far the fuck away and don't do it over anything u don't want melted.




That would make some pretty low grade thermite.

If I want thermite, I'll just buy it. United Nuclear sells it pre-mixed.


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Konnrade]
    #6120747 - 10/01/06 09:00 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

> I'm fully aware of the risks involved

When I was in college, one of the grad students was working on a project to create atomic aluminum. Aluminum in suspension where each particle had only a few atoms. They used molten aluminum and sprayed it at several times the speed of sound into a stream of argon that was also moving at several times the speed of sound in the opposite direction.

I don't know many details, but I do know that the pressure in the reaction was controlled by two valves; one increased input and one increased output. While running the experiment, the pressure went off a bit, and the grad student turned the valve to decrease the pressure. The pressure kept going up, so the student kept turning the valve. Unfortunately, he was turning the wrong valve. After a few moments, the entire experiement blew apart under the high gas pressure. Several pounds of molten / atomic aluminum dust suspended in argon was released into the basement of the buiding.

Although I was not involved with the project, I worked at the experiemental nuclear reactor that was next door. We were very lucky, probably from the argon more than anything, that the aluminum did not detonate. My adviser, an expert in explosives and demolition (who was one of the first people called for help when the WTC was bombed in the early 90's), calculated out the energy held by the aluminum. It was the equiv of several thousand pounds of TNT... enough to destroy the building completely, along with all of the immediate buildings, including the reactor building where I was. (The reactor was several stories (around 10m) under ground and would have not been damaged.)

After the accident, close to 1/4 of the campus was evaucated. The EPA ended up getting called, and I think they are the ones that did the cleanup. Everything was back to normal quickly; it only took them a day or two to clean the mess.

Aluminum can be very dangerous. Microfine powder will "float" out of a container on air currents. It is not healthy to breath. It also must be kept under inert gas, or the surface immediately oxides. For most pyrotechnic purposes, microfine isn't important (or wanted). I have made aluminum powder for thermite using nothing more than a block of aluminum and a file... what I would have given for a grinding wheel at the time. There is danger of explosion, even with thermite, when using microfine powders.

> oh, and what DID happen to poke_smot? I don't know anything about that

A home made pyrotechnic for forth of july celibration pre-detonated while he was holding it earlier this year. He lost a hand, a few fingers, collapsed both lungs, broke a few ribs, and received numerous cuts and burns across his face and chest. He was very lucky to live, and spent nearly two months in the hospital. He posted pictures a while back along with the story of what happened. Search on his user name and you should be able to find them...


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Edited by Seuss (10/01/06 07:25 PM)


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OfflineAsanteA
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Konnrade]
    #6120814 - 10/01/06 10:24 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

As for thermite: even if your aluminium is as coarse as granulated sugar, the stuff will work. In fact for many uses this is preferred because then it needs a considerable energy to get the reaction going.

Thats my main objection to microfine flash powders: it is so ridiculously sensitive that even a conflicting thought can set it off :wink:


An experimental nuclear reactor running on weapons grade HEU?
A tour! A tour! Me love you long time! A tour!

About the atomized aluminium: I hope your expert isn't the expert who  botched the WTC bombing investigation with his ego profiling. I read the court transcript some years ago (viva la Web) and boy did that guy phuckup, almost ruined the trial :crazy:

As for the aluminium estimation: no way a couple of pounds of aluminium could generate energies in the order of thousands of pounds of TNT (at 1 kcal/gr) because you at most get the full energy of the chemical reaction, unhindered by material coarseness.

You know that in the military explosives industry aluminized explosives (such as TNT/Al 8/2) are highly valued, the detonation forcing the oxidising gases into the aluminium. If atomized aluminium added that kind of boost, it would be a revolution in explosives technology beyond precedent.

Perhaps isomeric hafnium could, but no chemical reaction will beat TNT at 1.000 to one. At most a thermobaric atomized particle explosion of several lbs of aluminium could push out the walls and bring a modest house down, but no daisycutter-scale effects would occur.
Sorry, your expert was wrong  :wink:


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Offlinerobbyberto
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Asante]
    #6120875 - 10/01/06 11:18 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Make thermite to!


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Seuss]
    #6121015 - 10/01/06 12:53 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

He posted pictures a while back along with the story of what happened.

http://www.shroomery.org/forums/showflat.php/Number/5986601#Post5986601


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4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


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OfflineKonnrade
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Seuss]
    #6121671 - 10/01/06 06:13 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Well, clearly it would be wisest just to stick to using coarse mixtures.

It really shouldn't make all that much difference for fireworks. Coarse or fine, an m80 is still loud and can still blow small things up. Since coarse is more stable, I'd be a lot more comfortable transporting the stuff if it was coarse.


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Pulverizing aluminum powder? [Re: Asante]
    #6121890 - 10/01/06 07:28 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

> I hope your expert isn't the expert who botched the WTC bombing investigation with his ego profiling.

Nope, he was involved with figuring out the size, shape, and composition/chemistry of the explosive that was used... nothing to do with the politics, only the science.


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