OctanitrocubaneChemists are a mystery for two reasons: a) they’re pedantic and b) they often love explosions. So while you may have spent time in your high school chemistry class memorizing bond angles of 109.5 degrees the Mr. Hyde side of chemistry however doesn’t give a toss about that. Instead it makes things such as cubane or octanitrocubane (pictured) with C-C bonds at 90 degrees to each other. The product of this deviation from the preferred geometry of 109.5 degrees is an awful lot of strain and stored potential energy. As such octanitrocubane is the one of, if not the, most powerful, non-nuclear, explosive known. As a direct comparison what would take 1 kg of TNT might only take around 0.4 kg of octanitrocubane. This gives it a relative explosive factor somewhere between 2.38 and 2.7. To put this another way, it explodes with a velocity of over 10,000 metres per second. Unfortunately it’s highly difficult to make and has only been synthesized in small amounts, however its resistance to impact makes it a highly valuable, if inefficient, explosive.

Octanitrocubane

Chemists are a mystery for two reasons: a) they’re pedantic and b) they often love explosions. So while you may have spent time in your high school chemistry class memorizing bond angles of 109.5 degrees the Mr. Hyde side of chemistry however doesn’t give a toss about that. Instead it makes things such as cubane or octanitrocubane (pictured) with C-C bonds at 90 degrees to each other. The product of this deviation from the preferred geometry of 109.5 degrees is an awful lot of strain and stored potential energy. As such octanitrocubane is the one of, if not the, most powerful, non-nuclear, explosive known. As a direct comparison what would take 1 kg of TNT might only take around 0.4 kg of octanitrocubane. This gives it a relative explosive factor somewhere between 2.38 and 2.7. To put this another way, it explodes with a velocity of over 10,000 metres per second. Unfortunately it’s highly difficult to make and has only been synthesized in small amounts, however its resistance to impact makes it a highly valuable, if inefficient, explosive.