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Binary Liquid Explosives

I read an article on The Register website yesterday, asking: Mass murder in the skies: was the plot feasible?.

It was reflecting on the disruption at many airports last week and asking what possible liquids and gels could be carried onto planes and turned into dangerous explosives in any vaguely feasible way. These “binary liquid explosives” turn up in films but the real-life science just doesn’t have the same ka-pow.

Maybe it wasn’t explosions the security forces were worried about but some kind of poisonous chemical cloud? You can’t easily open a window to clear the air at 30,000 feet. However, I’m not enough of a chemist to know if there is anything that might do the job. On the other hand, perhaps the plotters and security experts had all been watching the same movies?

I hope common sense prevails; it is good if security forces are identifying and neutralising real threats from sociopathically-minded individuals but no good at all if they are jumpy, acting out of their fears. After all, they are the ones who are most clearly carrying dangerous weapons and wielding power that threatens lives and liberties.

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