are placed vertically and open end down in holding
for return feed to the heating units. Ordinarily, no water
racks. Hot water is jetted up into them at 90125 psi to
is discharged from a washout plant while it is running
melt and wash out the explosive fill. The hot water is
(although some do feature an overflow equal in volume
held at approximately 1800-2050F, a temperature which
to the volume of explosive washed out). Instead, the
melts the TNT. Much higher temperatures would clog
water is continuously recycled to the washout section
the flumes and filters. The molten TNT-water slurry is
after being chilled and filtered to remove excess
fed to a settling tank where most of the water is
dissolved and suspended explosive. When a plant is
separated for reuse. The molten explosive is pelletized
shut down, the water inventory maybe discharged to
by showering dropplets forced through a perforated plate
some disposal system or filtered through a carbon
and through ambient cold water. The solidified pellets
column for purification. It is planned to equip washout
are collected, dried, and boxed for storage or shipment.
plants with carbon absorption columns for final
The production rate of the standard APE 1300 system is
treatment of discharged water.
approximately 1400 pounds per hour of explosives,
limited mainly by the capacity of the pelletizing unit. A
d. Empty metal munition cases are flashed at the
modified washout system at Hawthorne AAP equipped
burning ground or in a flashing furnace to remove any
with a belt flaker has an estimated capacity of 2000
remaining traces of explosive, and then sent to Property
pounds per hour.
Disposal Office for disposal. Occasionally, when the
cases are needed for reloading, they may be chemically
c. Recycled water is chilled to remove excess
cleaned to avoid heat warpage.
dissolved explosive, filtered and sent to a holding tank
however, is unusual.
Figure 6-1. Washout room (APE 1300).