The Orion's Arm Universe Project Forums

Full Version: C4 Chemical Structure
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
So, watching Mythbusters and they're messing around with C4 explosives. As part of this they displayed the chemical formula. Turns out that C4 is basically CHON in a particular combination.

Given OA nanotech (or even biotech), at first blush it seems like it would be possible to generate the stuff right out of the the air or maybe air and water. With sunlight as the power source perhaps.

Likely there's a bit more to making it than that, but it's an interesting idea.

Anyway,

Todd
It would probably be easier to create explosives out of biont bodies, since they already have CHON in compounds with stored chemical energy. We already have at least one group of exploding bionts, but a particularly nasty bionano weapon could convert an unwilling victim's body into explosives. Dynamite has an energy density of 7.5MJ/kg, while fat has an energy density of 37 MJ/kg, so there is plenty of energy there to power the conversion process.
C4 is used because it's a very stable explosive; it's virtually impossible to set it off by accident. Nothing short of a blasting cap will do the job. Blasting caps contain explosives that have heavy metals (mercury or lead) in their chemical structure.

If it's shear explosive power that one is after, nothing beats hydrogen reacting with oxygen per unit of mass. Per unit of volume, it's diamond (in colloid form to aid combustion) with oxygen.
(09-10-2014, 11:07 AM)JohnnyYesterday Wrote: [ -> ]C4 is used because it's a very stable explosive; it's virtually impossible to set it off by accident. Nothing short of a blasting cap will do the job. Blasting caps contain explosives that have heavy metals (mercury or lead) in their chemical structure.

If it's shear explosive power that one is after, nothing beats hydrogen reacting with oxygen per unit of mass. Per unit of volume, it's diamond (in colloid form to aid combustion) with oxygen.

Hydrogen/fluorine reacts with about 20% more energy. Admittedly, the molecular mass of fluorine is a tad higher and H2/F2 doesn't form a metastable mixture as does H2/O2, but the energy is there.

I'd guesstimate that a fine powder of sodium or potassium (probably the former) with fluorine would be similarly... spectacular. And aluminium/oxygen, with the aluminium in powder form, is similarly energetic with the advantage that it does form a metastable mix. (Blowing fine aluminium powder into a Bunsen flame is an interesting experience. Smile )