Sensitivity Testing

Safety Management Services, Inc. (SMS) has extensive testing capabilities for characterization of explosives and hazardous materials. SMS personnel are intimately familiar with test methodologies, equipment, data acquisition, and data evaluation.

Our understanding of explosives and hazardous materials along with our testing expertise allows us to assist clients with determining what tests are appropriate, development of custom tests, interpretation of test results, and application of test results to the specific process or system. These testing services may be used independently or in conjunction with our process hazards analysis, incident investigation, facility siting, and other analysis services. Additionally, SMS offers training courses on the fundamental techniques used in explosives testing.

SMS testing capabilities include laboratory, bench-scale, sub-scale, and full-scale testing. This includes over 70 standard tests are available to characterize materials under conditions that simulate actual process conditions. Testing capabilities include both standard and custom testing tailored specifically to the client’s needs.

These standard tests include material sensitivity testing (e.g., impact, friction, ESD, electrical properties, chemical compatibility, etc.), DOT and DoD testing, and TNT equivalency testing. Our testing capabilities also include custom testing tailored specifically to the client’s requirements. Bench-scale and full-scale testing can be performed to better understand key operating parameters of processes and systems. Recommendations based on statistical evaluation of the material test data are made to help the client minimize process risks.

Below is a list of many of our test capabilities. A more in-depth review of various tests and methods can be found by clicking the links at the bottom of this page (some familiarity with explosives and related testing is assumed). For testing consideration, SMS must be provided with information needed to understand your material and the objective of the testing, as specified in “Standard Required Information for Testing.”


Material Sensitivity
  • Electrostatic Discharge (ESD)
  • Friction
  • Impact
  • Probit Analysis
Thermal and Compatibility Tests
  • Differential Scanning Calorimeter Tests
  • Fisher-Johns Auto-Ignition
  • Henkin Bath
  • Modified Taliani
  • Simulated Bulk Auto-Ignition Temperature (SBAT)
  • Taliani Stability Test
  • Thermal Stability
  • Vacuum Stability
  • Woods Metal Bath
Electrical Properties
  • Airvey Charge Generation
  • Dielectric Breakdown Strength
  • French (ESD) Test
  • Triboelectric Charging and Sliding Charge Generation
  • Volume and Surface Resistivity and Dielectric Constant
Dust Explosibility
  • Explosibility Index
  • Harman Minimum Concentration and Energy
  • Kst Value of Combustible Dusts
  • 20-Liter Dust Bomb
  • 20-Liter Pressure Rate
Vapor Explosibility
  • Parr Bombs
  • UFL/LFL (gases and liquids)
Large Scale Tests
  • Custom Tests and Test Design
  • Experimental Machining
  • In-process Simulations
  • Large Scale Critical Diameter
  • Large Scale Critical Height
  • Separation Ring Coupon
  • Skid Tests
  • TNT Equivalency
  • Explosive Cap Testing (No. 8 Cap)
  • Hazardous When Wet
  • Ignition and Unconfined Burn
  • Internal Ignition
  • Modified Unconfined Burn-Oxidizers
  • Single Package
  • Zero Gap, Card Gap
Insensitive Munitions
  • Cook-off
  • Fast Cook-off, Jet Fuel or Propane
  • Shaped Charge Jet
  • Shaped Charge Spall
  • Slow Cook-off
  • Sympathetic Detonation
Storage Classification Tests (BATF)
  • High Explosive
  • Low Explosive
  • Bonfire
  • Bullet Impact
  • Closed Bomb
  • Closed Pipe
  • Critical Diameter Standard
  • Critical Diameter Wedge
  • Critical Height
  • Deflagration to Detonation
  • Detonation Velocity
  • Drop Test
  • EIDS Gap
  • EPA Office of Solid Wast Test Method 1030
  • Free Fall Impingement
  • Gas Permeation Chromatography (GPC)
  • Heat of Combustion
  • Heat of Reaction
  • Koenen
  • CO2, CO, NOx Gas Analysis from Sensitivity Tests
  • Liquid Impingement
  • Low Level Shock/Low Energy Mechanical Shock
  • Mass Burn Rate
  • Modified UN screening Burn Rate Test
  • NOL Card Gap
  • Oxidizing Liquids Test
  • N.1 Readily Combustible Solids
  • Self-Accelerating Decomposition Temperature (SADT)
  • 70 mm Gun, 25 mm Gun, Shotgun
  • Solid Impingement
  • Thin Layer Burning
  • Thin Layer Propagation
  • Time/Pressure
  • Transparent Pipe
  • UN Gap

Below are links where further information can be found discussing various tests and methods.

Safety Management Services
1847 West 9000 South, Suite 205
West Jordan, Utah 84088
Phone: 801-567-0456

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Testing Resource

Kirt Sasser
Kirt Sasser, PE
Director of Engineering and Testing
SMS is one of five laboratories authorized by the DOT to witness classification tests for explosives (Class I). We also frequently run in-process tests. Testing is performed at our test site facility at the Tooele Army Depot where we have a thermal lab, sensitivity test lab, and large scale test area. Please contact us for further information at 801-567-0456 or by sending a request.

Testing Experience

Safety Management Services, Inc. (SMS) has experience in testing a wide variety of explosives and other hazardous materials, such as:
  • Agent, blasting
  • Air bag inflators
  • Air bag inflators, compressed gas
  • Articles, explosive (fuzes, detonating and cartridges, power device)
  • Boosters, without detonators
  • Explosive, blasting, type A-E
  • Flammable Solids
  • Igniters
  • Powder, smokeless
  • Propellant, solid
  • Rocket Motors
  • Waste, Substances, explosive
In addition to material characterization, SMS also has experience in providing testing and recommendations for In-Process Classification and DOT Shipping Classification.
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