Instructors who teach this course:

Upcoming Dates

July 23, 2019 to July 24, 2019

Pricing: $1895 | Instructor: Graham Rankin
8AM - 5PM
8AM - 5PM

Are you interested in this course, but it is either not offered or not at a time that works with your schedule?

You will be contacted once this course becomes available.

Course Details

Course Outline
  1. Explosives and explosion dynamics
  2. Parts of an improvised explosive device
  3. Scene investigation and evidence recovery
  4. Examination of post-blast debris
  5. Lab exercise: Debris recognition and device reconstruction
  6. Chemistry of explosives
  7. Analysis of intact low explosives
  8. Lab Exercise: Ignition susceptibility, flame tests, spot tests,
  9. Microchemical tests for cations and anions
  10. Lab Exercise: Differentiation of black powders and black powder substitutes
  11. Lab Exercise: Post blast identification of black powder, BP substitutes and pyrotechniques
  12. Smokeless powder analysis
  13. Instrumental methods (GCMS, HPLC, FTIR) for identification of organic explosives.
  14. Lab Exercise: Particle size and shape, single vs. double base by TLC
  15. Detection of devices
  16. Tour of facilities
  17. Wrap up and evaluation
What You Will Learn
  • Learn techniques for examination of post-blast debris for determination of low explosives using microscopic and simple chemical tests used to efficiently process the evidence.
  • Recognize the various remnants of various components found in improvised explosive devices which may aid in developing a “bombers signature” and investigative leads.
Who Should Enroll

Criminalists who are working with trace evidence especially post-blast debris. 

Student Learning Resources

All instrumentation, materials, and supplies necessary for successful completion of this course will be provided onsite by the Hooke College of Applied Sciences.

  • Essentials of Polarized Light Microscopy and Ancillary Techniques by John Gustav Delly
  • Explosives Identification Guide by Mick Picket (ISBN 0-7668-0490-9)
  • Forensic Chemistry Handbook ed. by Lawrence Kobilinsky (ISBN 978-0-471-73954-8)
  • Forensic Investigation of Explosions ed. by Alexander Beveridge (ISBN 0-7484-0565-8)
  • Practical Bomb Scene Investigation (2nd ed), James Thurman (ISBN 978-1-4398-1959-3)
  • Olympus BX51 microscope with polarized light capabilities
  • Olympus Stereomicroscope
  • The McCrone Atlas of Microscopic Particles, a free online reference aid to substance identification
  • Modern Microscopy, a free, peer-reviewed online journal for the professional microscopist
Student Prerequisites
  • Experience with PLM
  • Undergraduate science background
Satisfactory Completion Requirements

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:

  • 100% Attendance
  • Class participation
  • Completion of all course material
  • Completed and signed student evaluation form

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.

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