Low explosives (black powder, smokeless powder, or pyrotechnics) are the most commonly used energetic materials for improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in the US. This course addresses the identification and analysis of low explosives in pre-blast and post-blast evidence using simple wet chemical tests, macroscopical and microscopical methods (microchemical tests) to efficiently process evidence from bomb scenes. Using the approach of “work to exclude”, the student will learn how to process the bomb scene debris quickly and correctly to eliminate possible explosive residues and particles. More involved sample preparation and instrumental methods can then be applied for confirming the type of explosive used. This course is intended for criminalists who are currently or will be analyzing bomb debris and devices.
See below for course outline and additional information.
Criminalists who are working with trace evidence especially post-blast debris.
Students are expected to successfully complete a variety of tasks in the form of hands-on exercises, laboratory exercises, identifications of unknowns, and quizzes. Students are notified at the end of the course whether or not they have successfully completed the requirements of the course based on:
Upon successfully meeting these requirements, a student is awarded a certificate of completion and CEU credits, if available. Those who have not successfully passed the course requirements do not receive a certificate or CEU credits.