The use of ammonium nitrate emulsion (ANE) in mines, quarries and construction is well established and ANE’s are, in fact, very insensitive and stable products at standard temperature and pressure of normal manufacturing, especially compared to previously used nitroglycerin-based products. The purpose for studying thermal decomposition behaviour of ANE explosives is due to the continued worldwide occurrence of tragic incidents involving the production, processing and handling of ANE’s.
In order to test the ANE, a small volume test kit was used in order to minimize required material. For the sample testing, about 2.5mL was used which equates to roughly 4 grams of ANE. The sensor was placed inside an oven and a weighted cap was used to ensure that there was complete coverage of the sensor during testing.
The table below lists the measured thermal conductivity values for various batches of emulsion with increasing amounts of aluminum and microballoons.