Ordnance technicians are removing palm-sized squares of propellant from chemical agent mortar rounds during the reconfiguration process at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant, where the rounds will be destroyed.
“Since these 4.2-inch mortar rounds were never used in warfare, the propellant wafers must be removed during the process of baseline reconfiguration,” said Jacob Torres, operations superintendent, PCAPP.
Torres said once the wafer is removed from the mortar, it is placed into energetic packaging and is sent to the Anniston Field Office in Alabama for destruction by a Static Detonation Chamber.
When 4.2-inch mortar rounds were assembled in the 1940s and 1950s, the wafers were placed on the back ends of the munitions. The wafer charge was meant to propel the round when fired from a mortar tube platform, Torres said.
As of August 26, a total of 8,196 4.2-inch mortar rounds have been reconfigured.