Reactive Molecular Dynamic Simulation of Thermal Decomposition for Nano-Aluminized Explosives
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Aluminized explosives have important applications in civil construction and military armaments, but their thermal decomposition mechanisms are not well characterized. Here, the thermal decomposition of TNT, RDX, HMX and CL-20 on Al nanoparticles is examined by reactive dynamics simulations using a newly parameterized reactive force field with low gradient correction (ReaxFF-lg). Partially passivated Al nanoparticles were constructed and mixed with TNT, RDX, HMX and CL-20 crystals and then the mixed systems are heated to a high temperature in which the explosives are fully decomposed. The simulation results show that the aluminized explosives undergo three main steps of thermal decomposition, which were denoted "adsorption period" (0-20 ps), "diffusion period" (20-80 ps) and "formation period" (80-210 ps). These stages in sequence are the chemical adsorption between Al and surrounding explosive molecules (R-NO2-Al bonding), the decomposition of the explosives and the diffusion of O atoms into the Al nanoparticles, and the formation of final products. In the first stage, the Al nanoparticles decrease the decomposition reaction barriers of RDX (1.90 kJ g-1), HMX (1.95 kJ g-1) and CL-20 (1.18 kJ g-1), respectively, and decrease the decomposition reaction barrier of TNT from 2.99 to 0.29 kJ g-1. Comparing with the crystalline RDX, HMX and CL-20, the energy releases are increased by 4.73-4.96 kJ g-1 in the second stage. The number of produced H2O molecules increased by 25.27-27.81% and the number of CO2 molecules decreased by 47.73-68.01% in the third stage. These three stages are further confirmed by the evolutive diagram of the structure and temperature distribution for the CL-20/Al system. The onset temperatures (To) of generating H2O for all the aluminized explosives decrease, while those of generating CO2 for aluminized HMX and CL-20 increase, which are in accord with the experiment of aluminized RDX.
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