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Technical Report 
Application of the Cathode Ray Polarograph to the Analysis of Explosives 
Hetman, JS 
A method for the determination of nitroglycerine (55630) (NG) in double based propellants and blasting explosives was developed. For propellants, 0.1 grams of powder was mixed with 10 milliliters (ml) of pyridine at a temperature of 40 to 45 degrees-C. After cooling, ethanol was added and 0.5ml was transferred to a flask where 9.5ml of base electrolyte was added and mixed. A polarogram was recorded and the percentage of NG was obtained by comparing the wave height of each sample with a standard. For blasting explosives, 0.2 grams was added to a 50/50 solution of pyridine and ethanol. Again, 0.5ml was transferred and added to 9.5ml of the base electrolyte and a polarogram was recorded. The percentage of NG was determined as for the propellants. The method was experimentally demonstrated and found to be very rapid, enabling the determination to be completed in 15 minutes, with an average error of less than 2 percent. The method was accurate in the presence of nitrocellulose, cyclonite, and dinitroglycol. The author concludes that the simplicity of the method will allow its use in the routine analysis of various explosives containing NG. 
DCN-120231; Nitrates; Chemical properties; Explosive devices; Analytical methods; Polarographics; Quantitative analysis; Analytical chemistry; Sampling methods; Polarographs 
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