Armstrong's mixture

Armstrong's mixture is a highly sensitive primary explosive. Its primary ingredients are red phosphorus and strong oxidizer, such as potassium chlorate and potassium perchlorate. Sulfur is used to substitute for some or all of the phosphorus to slightly decrease sensitivity and lower costs; calcium carbonate may also be present in small proportions. Commercially, Armstrong's mixture is used in milligram quantities on the paper caps in toy cap guns and in party poppers.

It has also been considered a suitable mixture for the primer used in guns after boron carbide has been added, and was used during the Second World War.

Because of its sensitivity to shock, friction and flame, Armstrong's mixture is an extremely dangerous explosive. Only about 10 mg of it is used per item of consumer fireworks. Depending on composition, conditions and quantity, Armstrong's mixture can explode violently in an enclosed space.

This page was last edited on 27 February 2018, at 00:36.
Reference: under CC BY-SA license.

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