Volume 20, Issue 1 (January 1975)
A Portable Explosives Identification Kit for Field Use
Throughout the years, field analysis of explosives has often been a subject of interest and previous work at Picatinny Arsenal has led to the development of field kits for the qualitative analysis of explosives. Because the methods described in reports [1,2] utilize wet chemical reactions, they are not readily portable because of the bulky nature of the reagents involved. Furthermore, interpretation of the color reactions involved requires, in the least ambiguous cases, a degree of technical competence not readily acquired by personnel conducting field analyses. When sample specimens are limited in quantity, the application of a destructive method of identification may preclude the conducting of required specific identifications. Although Jenkins and Yallop  and Hansson  used conventional thin-layer chromatography (TLC) to generate useful chromatographic information, the method was, nevertheless, destructive by the application of visualization sprays resulting in color reactions.