In compiling the following treatise, my aim has been to give a brief but thoroughly practical account of the properties, manufacture, and methods of analysis of the various nitro-explosives now so largely used for mining and blasting purposes and as propulsive agents; and it is believed that the account given of the manufacture of nitro-glycerine and of the gelatine dynamites will be found more complete than in any similar work yet published in this country.
For many of the facts and figures contained in the chapter on Smokeless Powders I am indebted to (amongst others) the late Mr J.D. Dougall and Messrs A.C. Ponsonby and H.M. Chapman, F.C.S.; and for details with regard to Roburite to Messrs H.A. Krohn and W.J. Orsman, F.I.C. To these gentlemen my cordial thanks are due. Among the authorities which have been consulted in the general preparation of the work may be mentioned the Journals of the Chemical Society, the Society of Chemical Industry, the United States Naval Institute, and the Royal Artillery Institution. I have also referred to several volumes of the periodical publication Arms and Explosives; to various papers by Sir Frederick Abel, Bart., F.R.S., and General Wardell, R.A., on Gun-Cotton; to "Modern Artillery," by Capt. Lloyd, R.N., and A.G. Hadcock, R.A.; to the late Colonel Cundill's "Dictionary of Explosives"; as well as to the works of Messrs Eissler, Berthelot, and others.
The illustrations have been prepared chiefly from my own drawings. A few, however, have been taken (by permission) from the pages of Arms and Explosives, or from other sources which are acknowledged in the text.
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