Definitions

styphnate

Lead styphnate

Lead styphnate (lead 2,4,6-trinitroresorcinate, C6HN3O8Pb ), whose name is derived from styphnic acid, is a toxic explosive used as a component in primer and detonator mixtures for less sensitive explosives, such as gunpowder.

There are two forms of lead styphnate: six-sided monohydrate crystals and small rectangular crystals. Lead styphnate varies in color from yellow to brown. Lead styphnate is particularly sensitive to fire and the discharge of static electricity. When dry, it can be readily detonated by static discharges from the human body. The longer and narrower the crystals, the more susceptible lead styphnate is to static electricity. Lead styphnate does not react with metals and is less sensitive to shock and friction than mercury fulminate or lead azide. Lead styphnate is only slightly soluble in water and methyl alcohol and may be neutralized by a sodium carbonate solution. It is stable in storage, even at elevated temperatures.

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