Lead(II) azide

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350 °C (explodes)

Lead azide (Pb(N3)2) is an inorganic compound. More so than other azides, Pb(N3)2 is explosive. It is used in detonators to initiate secondary explosives. In a commercially usable form, it is a white-to-buff powder.

Contents

Preparation and handling

Lead azide is prepared by metathesis between sodium azide and lead nitrate. Dextrin can be added to the solution to stabilize the precipitated product. The solid is not very hygroscopic, and water does not reduce its impact sensitivity. It is normally shipped in a dextrinated solution that lowers its sensitivity. When protected from humidity, it is completely stable in storage.[2] An alternative synthesis pathway involves dissolving lead acetate in a sodium azide solution.[3][4]

Explosive characteristics

Lead azide is highly sensitive and usually handled and stored under water in insulated rubber containers. It will explode after a fall of around 150 mm (6 in) or in the presence of a static discharge of 7 millijoules. Its detonation velocity is around 5.18 km/s (17,500 ft/s).

Ammonium acetate and sodium dichromate are used to destroy small quantities of lead azide.

Lead azide reacts with copper, zinc, cadmium, or alloys containing these metals to form other azides. For example, copper azide is even more explosive and too sensitive to be used commercially.

See also

References

External links

PbBr2 · Pb2C · Pb(C5H5)2 · Pb(C2H3O2)2 · Pb(C2H3O2)4 · PbCl2 · PbCO3 · PbCrO4 · PbF2 · PbH4 · PbHAsO4 · PbI2 · Pb(NO3)2 · Pb(N3)2 · PbO · PbO2 · Pb3O4 · Pb(OH)2 · Pb3(PO4)2 · PbS2 · PbS2 · Pb(SCN)2 · PbSe · PbSO4 · PbTe · PbTiO3

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