Preparation of 4.2-inch mortar rounds for destruction at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot plant has entered a new phase.
In March, the plant completed baseline reconfiguration of mortars containing HD mustard agent and began reconfiguring the remaining HT mustard rounds.
“This means the plant has completed nearly three-quarters of 4.2-inch mortar baseline reconfiguration,” said Brian Ramdwar, deputy plant manager, PCAPP.
Mustard agent, purified sulfur mustard or distilled mustard has a 5% sulfur impurity, less odor and greater blistering power than the original mustard agent used in World War I. Mustard agent is also known as H, HD or HT. The weapons being destroyed at the facility have been stored at the U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot for decades.
Baseline reconfiguration is the process of taking boxed 4.2-inch mortar rounds from a ready-to-use configuration to a ready-to-process configuration. According to Ramdwar, the process of reconfiguring remains the same, but it is a new munition and crews are being extra observant and cautious.
The 4.2-inch mortar rounds will be processed by the three Static Detonation Chamber units starting in late 2020.