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Photolysis of RDX and nitroglycerin in the context of military training ranges.

Bordeleau, Geneviève; Martel, Richard; Ampleman, Guy; Thiboutot, Sonia (2013). Photolysis of RDX and nitroglycerin in the context of military training ranges. Chemosphere , vol. 93 , nº 1. p. 14-19. DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2013.04.048.

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Résumé

Hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine (RDX) and nitroglycerin (NG) are two energetic materials commonly found in the environment on military training ranges. They are deposited on the ground in the form of solid particles, which can then dissolve in infiltration water or in surface water bodies. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether photolysis by sunlight can significantly contribute to the natural attenuation of RDX and NG (as solid particles or dissolved in surface water) at mid-northern latitudes, where training ranges of Canada and many European countries are located. Experiments conducted at 46.9 degrees N show that both compounds are degraded by sunlight when dissolved in water, with half-lives between 1 and 120d, depending on the compound and time of year. Numerical models may be useful in predicting such photolysis rates, but the models should take into account current ozone levels, as older radiation datasets, collected before the ozone depletion observed since the late 1970s, underestimate the RDX/NG photolysis rate. For solid RDX or NG-bearing particles, photolysis is slower (half-lives of 2-4months), but the degradation rate is still rapid enough to make this process significant in a natural attenuation context. However, photolysis of NG embedded within solid propellant particles cannot proceed to completion, due to the stable nitrocellulose matrix of the propellant. Nonetheless, photolysis clearly constitutes an important attenuation mechanism that should be considered in conceptual models and included in numerical modeling efforts.

Type de document:
Mots-clés libres: photodegradation; sunlight; ultraviolet; propellant; explosives; munitions residues
Centre: Centre Eau Terre Environnement
Date de dépôt: 29 nov. 2016 21:20
Dernière modification: 29 nov. 2016 21:20
URI: http://espace.inrs.ca/id/eprint/3393

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