Emulsion Explosives

Emulsion Explosives Technology

Zukovich, Morhard & Wade, LLC is a design engineering firm that specializes in projects involving explosive, propellants and pyrotechnics with extensive experiences in explosive and detonator manufacturing in the US and in more than 95 countries world-wide. Zukovich, Morhard & Wade, LLC provides technical services for most of the world's multinational industrial explosives manufacturers.


Global Solutions

Design, permitting, regulatory compliance, public affairs, fabrication, commissioning, maintenance and technical support for forty-four (44) new or upgraded emulsion explosives manufacturing facilities over the careers of the Zukovich, Morhard & Wade, LLC founding partners.

Our partners US Patents form the basis for almost a third of the world’s nine million tons consumed each year.

Chosen by the US Government’s Defense Threat Reduction Agency and Alliant TechSystems, Inc. to solve technical problem of recycling former Soviet Union SS-24 and SS-19 ICBM propellant into emulsion explosives in Ukraine.

Provides technical services for manufacturing and safety for eight of the top ten multinational explosives producers and the top three largest multinational mining companies.

This electron microscope photograph was captured 13 March 2009 at the Changsha Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, in Hunan Province, China.This outstanding photograph is an example of the advanced ZMW emulsion explosives technology that results in an ultra small and evenly distributed emulsion droplet.With droplets ranging from 960 nanometers to 3.44 micrometer this emulsion matrix contains a very efficient and intimate arrangement of fuels and oxidizers, assuring a high quality detonation and a long shelf life with no segregation.The emulsion matrix was produced with a Zukovich, Morhard & Wade, LLC formulation for underground coal mining or permissible explosive fabricated with Zukovich, Morhard & Wade, LLC designed equipment at the Changzhi Production Plant in Shanxi Province supported by Gang Ming and the excellent staff and engineers at Shenzhen King Explorer Science and Technology.


Packaged Emulsion Explosives

  • Velocity of Detonation 13,000 ft/s (4,000 m/s) to over 17,700 ft/s (5,400 m/s)
  • Bulk Density 1.15 to 1.25 g/cc
  • Relative Bulk Strength 120 – 180 (ANFO = 100)
  • Water Resistance Excellent
  • Shelf Life 1 Year No significant crystallizing or segregation
  • Temperature Ranges -20C to over +50C
  • Explosion Temperature 2,200 to 3,700C
  • Critical Diameter 0.5 inch (12.7mm)
  • Detonation Pressure 100 Kbar
  • Absolute Weight Strength 674 – 928 cal/gram
  • Absolute Bulk Strength 775 – 1095 cal/cc
  • Impact and Friction No action in UN Standard Tests
  • Sensitivity No 8 strength detonator
  • Hazards Class: Explosive, Blasting Type E, UN 0241 PG11 UN 1.1 D

Bulk Emulsion Explosives

  • Velocity of Detonation 13,000 ft/s (4000 m/s) - 19,000 ft/s (5800 m/s)
  • Bulk Density 1.07 to 1.31 g/cc
  • Relative Bulk Strength 126 – 187 (ANFO = 100)
  • Water Resistance:
    Excellent (Emulsion/ANFO 100/0, 70/30. 60/40)
    Good (Emulsion/ANFO 40/60, 35/65)
    Poor (Emulsion/ANFO 25/75, 20/80, 10/90)
  • Shelf Life 1 Year No Crystallizing or segregation
  • Temperature Ranges -20C to over +50C
  • Explosion Temperature 2,200 to 3,700C
  • Heat at Constant Volume 3 to 5 MJ/kg
  • Specific Energy 800 to 1,200 kJ/kg
  • Specific Pressure 8,500 to over 11,000 atm/kg.
  • UN Hazards Class options

    Ammonium Nitrate Emulsion UN 3375
    Hazard Class 5.1 Oxidizing Substance


    Explosive, Blasting Type E, UN 0332
    Hazard Class1.5D Blasting Agent

  • Dependent upon the ratio of Emulsion or ANFO in the blend or pumped as bulk


  • Produce various emulsion formulations for customized performance
  • Full borehole coupling optimizes transfer of energy from the explosive into the rock
  • High energy formulation for consistent performance in both wet and dry conditions
  • Excellent sensitivity and pre-compression resistance
  • Increased productivity through enhanced performance
  • Optimized blasting performance and reduced secondary blasting to reduce costs

Emulsion Explosives Technical Overview

An emulsion is made up of a mixture of two liquids that do not normally mix with one another, as one liquid is oil-based, and the other liquid is water-based. When the appropriate emulsifier is present and enough mechanical energy is exerted, the two phases can be forced to blend together. Emulsion explosives are, therefore, prepared in the form of water-in-oil emulsions. The internal phase is composed of a solution of oxidizer salt suspended as microscopically fine droplets, which are surrounded by a continuous fuel phase. An emulsifying agent stabilizes the emulsion thus formed against liquid separation. Since each microcell of the oxidizer is coated with an oily exterior, the emulsion has excellent water resistance and does not rely on a pack-age for their ability to function efficiently in water. A bulking agent such as ultra fine air bubbles or glass microspheres may be then dispersed throughout the basic emulsion matrix, which provides for density control and sensitivity. What makes a water-in-oil emulsion particularly effi-cient is that the major component by weight is mixed into the minor component. This not only results in a finely dispersed, homogenous mixture, but one in which the oil phases constitutes the outside or continuous phase. It is this feature that imparts excellent water resistance to emulsion type explosives.