Date of Award

Summer 2003

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Chemical Engineering - (M.S.)

Department

Chemical Engineering

First Advisor

Lev N. Krasnoperov

Second Advisor

Dana E. Knox

Third Advisor

Robert Pfeffer

Abstract

Nanotechnology is a rapidly evolving field and has been characterized as "the next industrial revolution". Nanostructured materials are receiving increasing amount of attention in fields ranging from electronics to metallurgy due to their novel and unique properties. This work was focused on exploring the benefits of nanofabrication of high density energetic materials. The work primarily focused on the feasibility and viability of recrystallization of nitramine explosives down to the nanometer crystal size (<100 nm). It is anticipated that properties of the high density energetic materials such as sensitivity, packing density, crystal quality, energetic performance will be benefited.

Rapid Expansion of Supercritical Solutions was chosen as the process most appropriate to realize the objective. Solubility of CL-20 in supercritical solutions was studied. Nitramine crystals with sizes ranging from 100 to 3000 nm were produced having narrow size distribution. Effects of process conditions crystal size and shape were investigated. A continuous process was developed. Sum-gram quantities of nano-scale powders were produced.

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