Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate

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pentaerythritol tetranitrate

[¦pen·tə·ə′rith·rə‚tȯl ‚te·trə′nī‚trāt]
(organic chemistry)
C(CH2ONO2)4 A white crystalline compound, melting at 139°C; explodes at 205-215°C; soluble in acetone, insoluble in water; used in medicines and explosives. Also known as penthrite; PETN.

Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate


(also penthrite), C(CH2ONO2)4, a substance occurring as white crystals that is insoluble in water and that has a melting point of 141°–142° C and a density of 1.74 g/cm3. Pentaerythritol tetranitrate is obtained by the nitration of pentaerythritol using concentrated nitric acid or a mixture of nitric and sulfuric acids. The compound is a powerful explosive and is highly detonable and sensitive to mechanical action. Its detonation wave travels at a speed of 8,300 m/sec at a density of 1.6 g/cm3. The heat of explosion is 5,803 kilojoules/kg (1,385 kilocalories/kg), and the compound ignites at 200° C.

Pentaerythritol tetranitrate is used in making detonating fuses; it also serves as a secondary explosive in detonators. It can be mixed with trinitrotoluene to form substances known as pento-lites. In medicine, it is used in vasodilative preparations.


Orlova, E. Iu. Khimiia i tekhnologüa brizantnykh vzryvchalykh veshchestv, 2nd ed. Leningrad, 1973.
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Sequence and properties of pentaerythritol tetranitrate reductase from Enterobacter cloacae PB2.
Powerful weapon of choice PENTAERYTHRITOL tetranitrate, or PETN, is a major ingredient of Semtex and is one of the most powerful explosives known.
Concannon pleaded guilty to having explosive substance pentaerythritol tetranitrate on June 10 last year with the intent of enabling others to endanger life.
Concannon admitted to having an explosive substance, pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN), with the intent of enabling others to endanger life and having explosive substances - aluminium granules, a magnesium ribbon and metal springs - with the intent to endanger life.
PETN, or pentaerythritol tetranitrate, is a colourless explosive that is difficult to detect and a small amount can cause great damage.
They also said that the ink cartridge it contained was packed with pentaerythritol tetranitrate, or PETN.
While the new finding provides evidence that the plane was destroyed by an explosive device, a senior official noted that PETN, or pentaerythritol tetranitrate, was an explosive component commonly found in many bombs and surface-to-air missiles, making it impossible, for now, to know for sure which type of explosive device destroyed the Boeing 747, killing all 230 people aboard.
Summary: Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India] July 15 (ANI): The security has been beefed up at the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly after explosive powder, Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate (PETN), was found inside the assembly yesterday.
Terrorists are believed to be plotting attacks with the explosive pentaerythritol tetranitrate, or PETN.
Police said the powder contained pentaerythritol tetranitrate, or PETN, the same explosive substance used by 23-year-old Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who tried to detonate a device in his underwear while on board a passenger flight over the US on December 25.
consisted of Pentaerythritol tetranitrate - a highly explosive substance known
Uttar Pradesh's Inspector General of the Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS), Aseem Arun has said the discovery of the explosive powder -- Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate (PETN) - hinted the possibility of a terrorist activity.