Aging WWII Bombs Become More Sensitive to Detonation


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(Task & Purpose) A recent study published in Royal Society Open Science highlights that aging unexploded ordnance from World War II, containing the explosive Amatol, is becoming more sensitive to impact over time. This increased sensitivity raises the risk of unexpected detonations, posing dangers to storage facilities and communities. Testing on samples from German bombs revealed heightened sensitivity, up to four times more than previously thought.

Factors such as inferior storage conditions and contamination with moisture or salt contribute to this increased risk. Discoveries of unexploded ordnance, like the recent finds in Plymouth and Cologne, underscore ongoing dangers. Additionally, the study warns of potential environmental contamination and emphasizes the need for updated handling protocols.

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Published: Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Last Updated: Tuesday, April 9, 2024

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