Fundamental studies of the adhesion of explosives to textile and non-textile surfaces

H. A. Yu, T Becker (Lead / Corresponding author), Niamh Nic Daeid, S. W. Lewis (Lead / Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
383 Downloads (Pure)


This paper describes the use of atomic force microscopy (AFM) to investigate the interactions between explosives crystals and different surfaces. Crystals of TNT, PETN and RDX were mounted onto tipless AFM cantilevers and repeatedly brought into contact with a range of surfaces (n=15), including textile and non-textile surfaces. The adhesion force during each contact was measured, and the results are presented in this work. The results suggest that explosives crystals display a higher adhesion to smoother, non-textile surfaces, particularly glass. This finding may be of use for forensic explosives investigators when deciding the best types of debris to target for explosives recovery.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-95
Number of pages8
JournalForensic Science International
Early online date17 Feb 2017
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2017


  • Explosives
  • Detection
  • Adhesion
  • Analysis
  • Forensic
  • Explosions


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