- This article is about the small, crude homemade explosive device. For the improvised explosive devices used in Iraq to disperse chlorine gas as a chemical weapon, refer to Chlorine bombings in Iraq.
A chlorine bomb is a small explosive device which uses the pressure of chemically produced chlorine gas or other chlorine-containing gases such as hydrogen chloride to produce an explosion. It is made with an airtight container part-filled with different types of chlorine tablet and other reagents. The reaction produces an expansive increase in pressure, eventually rupturing the container. Usually, such a device is not made on a large scale, often being manufactured from common house objects.
Such a device is a more toxic and acidic alternative to a dry ice bomb, but likewise typically made by young people for amusement and recreational use rather than with any intent to harm. However, exposure to chlorinous gases and the reactive substances involved can cause respiratory problems from inhalation and also cause injury to other mucous membranes, similar to tear gas. Most injuries relating to these devices involve bruised hands, blinding and other eye injuries.
Pastor's Terrorism and Public Safety Policing outlines how "Cprogram" is emphasizing lessons learned in Iraq regarding chlorine bomb use on American soldiers. This exposure has provided police departments like the NYPD with incentive to amend current policing models from Community Policing to a Public Safety Policing model that emphasizes risk aversion via public/private policing partnerships through metropolitan arenas.[clarification needed] Moreover, the chlorine bomb and other weapons systems in its class achieve this because they are easy to manufacture and thus represent a more fluid weapons delivery model for domestic and international terrorists.
Contrary to the opinion of chemical laymen and public security experts, chlorine is not generated by the reaction of hydrochloric acid with ammonia but ammonium chloride. Also chlorine is not formed by the reaction of chlorine bleach with ammonia. The reaction of bleach with ammonia forms chloramine, nitrogen trichloride and a number of other toxic and explosive products depending on the circumstances of the chemical reaction, but not pure chlorine.