Fluorine-containing oxidizers for metal fuels in energetic formulations

Siva Kumar Valluri, Mirko Schoenitz, Edward Dreizin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

121 Scopus citations


Fluorine containing oxidizers, primarily polymers, are extensively used in pyrotechnic compositions. Fluorinated oxidizers are less explored for metalized propellants and explosives despite a potential advantage of substantial heat release combined with gaseous combustion products. This review summarizes different types of fluorinated oxidizers used in energetic formulations or of potential interest for such systems, including gases, polymers, and inorganic compounds. Types of energetic formulations employing metals and fluoropolymers are discussed in more detail, including methods used to prepare composites and resulting salient features of the obtained materials. Laboratory experiments characterizing such materials, in particular, electron microscopy and thermal analysis, are discussed, showing characteristic morphologies and reaction sequences observed in different metal-fluorinated oxidizer composites. Striking similarities are noted in reaction sequences for diverse compositions hinting at possible similarities in the respective reaction mechanisms. Experiments probing ignition and combustion of metal-fluorinated oxidizer composites in laboratory conditions are also reviewed, including impact, flash heating and shock ignition. Finally, some practical performance tests for energetic formulations are described following by a brief discussion of the reaction mechanisms expected to govern ignition and combustion in various metal-fluorinated oxidizer composites. The conclusions are combined with recommendation for future research in the area of reactive metal-fluorinated oxidizer composites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
JournalDefence Technology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys


  • Composites
  • Explosives
  • Propellants
  • Pyrotechnics
  • Reactive materials
  • Redox reactions


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