Wednesday, September 05, 2007

THAT'S A LOTTA PEROXIDE: 1,500 pounds of 35 percent Wasserstoffperoxidlosung (hydrogen peroxide concentrate)

In regards to today's breaking news on terror plotters in Germany, seizure of 1,500 pounds of thirty-five percent hydrogen peroxide reveals a significant and dangerous hoard.

Hits on TATP and peroxide bomber stories from this blog ticked up strongly all morning.

Peer-reviewed literature syntheses of the touchy explosive triacetone peroxide (TATP) have often gone with 50 percent hydrogen peroxide but other studies have shown thirty percent sufficient if one is willing to allow the reaction to go longer and furnish less product by volume. A find of thirty-five percent hydrogen peroxide in large quantity in the hands of bad men is a significant event.

Since news is incomplete, it is important to know what other compounds, materials and methods were seized in addition to what has already been reported.

Thirty-five percent hydrogen peroxide is used in water sanitation, fifty percent in paper pulp bleaching. A photo of a label on one of the barrels distincly shows 35 percent concentration and should furnish enough information to tell authorities where the bulk chemical was purchased, who originally placed the order and for what purported reason. Even if stolen or diverted, some helpful information should turn up. (Upon looking at pics of seized barrels, the manufacturer or distributor seems to be obscured by tape.)

If the accused had all their ducks in a row (or even lucked from incomplete intel that they had) -- all reagents necessary and adequate plans and procedures for improvised explosive synthesis -- it was time to move on them.


Grades of hydrogen peroxide. Thirty-five percent used in waste water treatment.

Peroxide, TATP, terror cases. From the archive.


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