If you're worried about the environment but still need to blow people up, a new class of nitrogen-based bomb materials is for you. Popular explosives like TNT and HMX react to form nitrogen oxides when detonated, the major culprits behind smog and acid rain. This is a big no-no if you're the type of warmonger who drives a hybrid tank, obviously, so weapons experts at the University of Munich devised an alternatives that are cleaner, more stable, and even more powerful than those other explosives.

Irony aside, the new compounds — dubbed HBT and G2ZT — reportedly only produce ammonia as their byproduct when they go boom. This is a good thing because many long-term health problems related to air pollution come from the formation of nitrogen oxides.


Of course if you make lots of super-powerful bombs out of HBT or G2ZT, many people probably won't be around to enjoy the cleaner air. But the researchers say another application would be cleaner rocket fuels, which we're going to need as flights into space become more and more common.

Source: American Chemical Society via EurekAlert