Where might you find them?

Explosives and energetic materials are not confined to military collections. They may also be found in collections such as:

  • Chemistry – shock-sensitive compounds such as peroxides, azides, fulminates, picric acid.
  • Communications / signalling – flares, distress signals, smoke signals.
  • Fire-fighting – self-activating fire extinguishers.
  • Mining / civil engineering – cartridges, charges, detonating cord, detonating fuse.
  • Social history – fireworks, artistic use of cartridges, shells, mortars, rockets or grenades, e.g. ‘trench art’.
  • Theatre, film and television – theatrical pyrotechnics, squibs.
  • Transport – vehicle airbags, railway track detonators, line-throwing rockets, ejection seat systems, solid fuels.