Optimizing the biotransformation of RDX and HMX Conference Paper uri icon


  • Experiments for the maximization of the amount of hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine (RDX) and octahydro-1,3,5,7-hexahydro-1,3,5,7-tetrazocine (HMX) transformed biotically were performed by varying the oxic conditions in reactors while minimizing the production of environmentally unfavorable intermediates. Other byproducts such as formaldehyde, hydrazine, 1,1-dimethylhydrazine, and 1,2-dimethylhydrazine were also identified. For the RDX studies, RDX transformation was highest in anoxic reactors at a dissolved oxygen below 0.5 mg/l and a redox average of 117 mV while least amount of MNX accumulation was produced when lagged in the oxic phases. HMX transformation was best in the anoxic reactor sets and lowest during oxic phases for the HMX studies. Aeration reduced the rate and extent of transformation of the parent compound but enhanced ring-cleavage and appears to produce a more environmentally desirable makeup of byproducts.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Autenrieth, R. L., Jankowski, M. D., Bonner, J. S., & Kodikanti, M.

complete list of authors

  • Autenrieth, RL||Jankowski, MD||Bonner, JS||Kodikanti, M

publication date

  • December 1999