Nanothermites: A short Review. Factsheet for Experimenters, Present and Future Challenges
Nanothermites are the most important family of energetic materials in contemporary pyrotechnics. This article traces the main research which was carried out in this still recent domain and the challenges that remain to be overcome. The academic effort of past two decades has brought nanothermites from the status of laboratory curiosities to the one of pre‐industrial materials. Different aspects of nanothermites are discussed in order to provide valuable information to scientists experimenting in this domain. Experimental details on the preparation and the disposal of nanothermites are reported. The current research on nanothermites deals with: (i) the development of new aluminothermic mixtures; (ii) the preparation of hybrid compositions by combining nanothermites with explosive nanopowders and (iii) the study of reactive properties. From an academic standpoint, the future challenges are to find new compositions and effects. From a practical standpoint, the effort must focus on the integration of nanothermites and their derivatives in pyrotechnic systems. Toxicological concerns are expected to become increasingly important over the next decade.