AA (azidoazide azide) is a hyper-explosive 14 nitrogen molecule. My questions are: what are some theoretical ways to store it so it doesn't explode on you but on the enemy you throw it at, and what would be the feasibility and practicability of this as a weapon?


1 Answer 1


From the Things I Won't Work With blog:

The compound exploded in solution, it exploded on any attempts to touch or move the solid, and (most interestingly) it exploded when they were trying to get an infrared spectrum of it.

In other words, there is no practical use for it - it is far too unstable to even get it out of the lab that produced it, much less into any sort of weapon.

  • $\begingroup$ Could you have a micro lab that made the stuff and used it as a weapon on the spot? $\endgroup$
    – Amoeba
    Mar 14, 2018 at 3:03
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @user45751 that could be plausible, but not useful - thanks to conservation of energy, any energy you get out of the explosion had to be put in there in the first place. So it takes a lot of energy to produce, and you'd be better off using that energy directly instead of trying to produce a compound that is likely to explode partway through the synthesis. $\endgroup$
    – Rob Watts
    Mar 14, 2018 at 3:15
  • $\begingroup$ is their any circumstance that would make using that stuff preferable to others $\endgroup$
    – Amoeba
    Mar 14, 2018 at 3:18
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ This answer is exactly correct. The power of an explosive in military use is secondary. The primary consideration is always reliability - the ability of a friendly forces to get the explosive to detonate at the desired place/time/yield required and no other. An explosive that destroys the submarine/carrier/aircraft/truck/squad/soldier carrying it is, from a military point of view, thoroughly and expensively counterproductive. We don't lack powerful explosives. $\endgroup$
    – user535733
    Mar 14, 2018 at 11:57
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ To put this in perspective you can set fire to that bastion of military explosives, C4, and it won't explode. That's the kind of explosives the military like to have around. $\endgroup$ Mar 14, 2018 at 15:24

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