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Proceedings Paper

Proximal detection of energetic materials on fabrics by UV-Raman spectroscopy
Author(s): R. Chirico; S. Almaviva; F. Colao; L. Fiorani; M. Nuvoli; W. Schweikert; F. Schnürer; L. Cassioli; S. Grossi; L. Mariani; F. Angelini; I. Menicucci; A. Palucci
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Paper Abstract

In the last decades there have been several terroristic attacks with improvised explosive devices (IED) that have raised the need for new instrumentation, for homeland security applications, to obtain a reliable and effective fight against terrorism. Public transportation has been around for about 150 years, but terroristic attacks against buses, trains, subways, etc., is a relatively recent phenomenon [1]. Since 1970, transportation has been an increasingly attractive target for terrorists. Most of the attacks to transport infrastructures take place in countries where public transportation is the primary way to move. Terrorists prefer to execute a smaller-scale attack with certainty of success rather than a complex and demanding operation to cause massive death and destruction. [1]. Many commonly available materials, such as fertilizer, gunpowder, and hydrogen peroxide, can be used as explosives and other materials, such as nails, glass, or metal fragments, can be used to increase the amount of shrapnel propelled by the explosion. The majority of substances that are classified as chemical explosives generally contain oxygen, nitrogen and oxidable elements such as carbon and hydrogen [2]. The most common functional group in military explosives is NO2. That functionality can be attached to oxygen (ONO2) in the nitrate esters (PETN), to carbon (C-NO2) in the nitroarenes (TNT) and nitroalkanes (Nitromethane), and to nitrogen (N-NO2) as in the nitramines (RDX). Some organic peroxides, such as TATP and HMTD, are popular amongst terrorists because they are powerful initiators that can be easily prepared from easily available ingredients. Azides are also powerful primary explosives commonly used as initiators (commercial detonators) in civilian and military operations, therefore they could be potentially used by terrorists as initiators for IEDs.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 May 2014
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 9073, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Sensing XV, 90730F (29 May 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2045572
Show Author Affiliations
R. Chirico, ENEA (Italy)
S. Almaviva, ENEA (Italy)
F. Colao, ENEA (Italy)
L. Fiorani, ENEA (Italy)
M. Nuvoli, ENEA (Italy)
W. Schweikert, Fraunhofer-Institut für Chemische Technologie (Germany)
F. Schnürer, Fraunhofer-Institut für Chemische Technologie (Germany)
L. Cassioli, Aeronautica Militare Italiana (Italy)
S. Grossi, Aeronautica Militare Italiana (Italy)
L. Mariani, Aeronautica Militare Italiana (Italy)
F. Angelini, ENEA (Italy)
I. Menicucci, ENEA (Italy)
A. Palucci, ENEA (Italy)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9073:
Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Sensing XV
Augustus Way Fountain III, Editor(s)

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