Q-Cel® Hollow Glass Microspheres: Emulsion Explosive Sensitizers

Q-CEL® hollow microspheres are unsurpassed as sensitizers for water based industrial explosives used in mining, quarrying and construction. The tiny spheres function as encapsulated air within the explosives matrix and are an integral part of the system. During the initiation by a primer, the spheres become hot spots, concentrating energy to generate extreme temperatures and decompose the surrounding explosives mixture. Reliable and efficient release of energy is apparent from consistent velocity of detonation and controlled fragmentation of the rock.

Q-CEL® hollow spheres are more economical and reliable as sensitizers compared to alternative materials such as organic nitro and nitrate compounds, and they withstand pumping pressures and shock desensitization better than other inorganic materials due to the high strength spherical shell. Choosing the correct grade of microsphere for a given application depends primarily on the shear and pressure in processing as well as consideration of the dynamic forces encountered in delay blasting. For closely spaced boreholes or blasting in very wet conditions with mud seams or layered rock, it may be necessary to specify stronger grades of spheres. Applications for microspheres include everything from small diameter cartridges to the largest bulk delivered open pit shots. Water gels, straight emulsions and emulsion blends have benefited greatly from microsphere sensitization worldwide. The use of inferior sensitization methods has proven to be false economy in many different blasting conditions.  What you hoped you gained in raw materials costs in the explosives you lose many times over in operational inefficiencies.

Today's blasting engineers are demanding high performance and that is why sales of precise electronic detonators have taken off.  Mining and quarry studies have demonstrated that an excellent blast means lower costs and Q-Cel® sensitizers are at the heart of the system. With 38 years of growing sales to the industrial explosives industry, Q-CEL® spheres have proven their worth in reducing the overall costs of the mining & quarry industries. Having established that reliable initiation as well as consistent rock breakage have reduced drilling, hauling, grinding and processing costs, the efficiency of properly sensitized emulsion explosives is key to the mining engineer’s efforts to enhance overall operations profitability.

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