Searching \ for '[EE] - Safe Self-Destruct' in subject line. ()
Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure! Help us get a faster server
FAQ page: www.piclist.com/techref/index.htm?key=safe+self+destruct
Search entire site for: '- Safe Self-Destruct'.

Exact match. Not showing close matches.
PICList Thread
'[EE] - Safe Self-Destruct'
2008\03\17@091004 by Chaoua, Rashid

flavicon
face
Greetings,

I was curious if anyone out there is aware of the different methods one
might employ to destroy the contents of a safe (electronic devices and
sensitive documents). The only method I have come across is using a
thermite grenade. However, this destroy the surrounding area of the safe
as well and is undesirable. Anybody got any ideas?



Rachid



2008\03\17@094528 by sergio masci

flavicon
face


On Mon, 17 Mar 2008, Chaoua, Rashid wrote:

> Greetings,
>
> I was curious if anyone out there is aware of the different methods one
> might employ to destroy the contents of a safe (electronic devices and
> sensitive documents). The only method I have come across is using a
> thermite grenade. However, this destroy the surrounding area of the safe
> as well and is undesirable. Anybody got any ideas?

I don't know if the "thermite grenade" is designed to scatter burning
thermite or not. If *NOT* put it in a crucible such that the crucible will
hold the molten iron and help distribute the heat inside the space without
letting it build up in one spot and burn through the floor. You might need
a graphite crucible and you might also need a fire brick under the
crucible. You might also need to reduce the "charge" inside the granade.

Regards
Sergio

2008\03\17@095556 by William Couture

face picon face
On Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 9:09 AM, Chaoua, Rashid <spam_OUTrashid.chaouaTakeThisOuTspamlmco.com> wrote:

>  I was curious if anyone out there is aware of the different methods one
>  might employ to destroy the contents of a safe (electronic devices and
>  sensitive documents). The only method I have come across is using a
>  thermite grenade. However, this destroy the surrounding area of the safe
>  as well and is undesirable. Anybody got any ideas?

Back "in the old days", "rum runners" and "numbers runners" kept their
documents on rice paper, and kept a bucket of water next to the desk.

If / when the police raided them, the notes went into the bucket.

Bill

--
Psst... Hey, you... Buddy... Want a kitten? straycatblues.petfinder.org

2008\03\17@103342 by M. Adam Davis

face picon face
Assuming that you only have to deal with those two types of items
(paper documents and electronic devices) then there are a number of
ways to render them unusable.  I'm assuming that the safe cannot be
modified - that you'd like to place this destruct in existing safes
without taking up much space.

Paper is surprisingly durable - it takes very high heat to ignite it,
and when stacked the inner pages are often left unburned due to lack
of oxygen.

Electronics can be very easily damaged by blunt force, and very high heat.

The problem with fire is that it requires significant oxygen and a way
to get rid of exhaust.  In a typical safe, especially those that are
'fire rated' for more than a few minutes, you aren't going to have
enough oxygen or exhaust to burn all the papers unless you have an
independant source of heat.

I suppose a thermite material of some sort with built in oxygen
dropped on a stack of papers might do it, but it would be tricky to
engineer to get 80% coverage, nevermind 100%.

Unless the molten material of the thermite grenade consumes all the
paper, the fire is likely to self-extenguish with many of the
documents still existing in large pieces.

So I think your best bet is to dissolve the paper in a chemical of
some sort, and destroy the electronics in a mechanical crusher.  This
requires more effort and space, though.  Put the documents on a metal
wire shelf with an empty tray below.  The chemical is stored in a
bottle until needed, at which point it empties into the tray.  A pump
sprays liquid from the tray over the documents which will eventually
dissolve them into a sludge in the tray.  This is not unlike etching a
PCB.

Alternately, get a safe that's twice as large as needed, store the
items in the bottom half in a bucket, and store the chemical in the
top half in a sealed bucket with a solenoid on the bottom.  On trigger
the bottom bucket fills with teh chemical and everything is sludge in
the 1-2 hours a good safe cracker can open a high rated safe.

I'm sure there are lots of other methods.  Perhaps consult the CIA and
see what they do for suitcases that destroy documents on command (or
lack of heartbeat command) from the attached agent.  :-)

If you can use a specific paper (rice paper, for instance) then your
job is easier, and if you have to handle items other than paper (linen
paper, plastic or laminated documents, binders, etc) then your job is
harder.

Good luck, and remember to send videos of your tests!  ;-)

-Adam

On 3/17/08, Chaoua, Rashid <.....rashid.chaouaKILLspamspam@spam@lmco.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2008\03\17@104121 by Apptech

face
flavicon
face
> I was curious if anyone out there is aware of the
> different methods one
> might employ to destroy the contents of a safe (electronic
> devices and
> sensitive documents). The only method I have come across
> is using a
> thermite grenade. However, this destroy the surrounding
> area of the safe
> as well and is undesirable. Anybody got any ideas?

A bit more information about the intended application may
facilitate a less general response than may otherwise be
forthcoming :-).

Is this your safe?
Is someone paying you to do this?
Do you need a fast car and a clear escape route immediately
after the destruction.
Do you have a double O rating?
... ?

Shaped charge can do quite well. Noisy.

Thermite on top face can have a fireproof covering for
relatively minor exacerbation of secondary thermal
consequences. Firebrick. Sodium silicate constructs.
Asbestos blankets (don't breath). Other. Not a bad choice.

If you are trying to nuke the insides of a safe why would
you not want to nuke their office as well ? :-).

How real a safe?
Drill and fill - water/acid / ...

What is the surface it rests on made of?
Can you heat it with flame etc.
Induction heating?
Thermal Lance attack?

How long do you have?
How easy is access?

Is there some country where this is not a felony?
How can I be sure of never going there?
Is this covered by ITAR / Patriot's Act / 45 Clear /
Guantanamo vacation / Lear Jet Rendition getaway holiday?
Is this for an Easter surprise?
For your wife?
Or is it a late thought for St Patrick's day?



       Russell

2008\03\17@112808 by sergio masci

flavicon
face


On Mon, 17 Mar 2008, M. Adam Davis wrote:

{Quote hidden}

Use folders made of card saturated in potasium nitrate. Ensure only small
number of papers (about 20 - 25) placed in each folder.

Thermite in small enclosed space will cause folders to ignite and
deflagrate using papers inside as fuel together with excesss oxygen
from nitrate.

Regards
Sergio

2008\03\17@120612 by Cedric Chang

flavicon
face
Really Rustle....   you act like this is an unusual request.  Several  
times a month I have to firebomb various objects around the U.S.   I  
just wait for a call from my handlers and zooooom , I am on my way.  
Personally, I am loathe to share my secrets about burning out safes.  
Competition, ya know.
cc

{Quote hidden}

2008\03\17@122228 by Martin

face
flavicon
face
Search YouTube for "Will it Blend?"
;)
-
Martin

Chaoua, Rashid wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2008\03\17@123048 by Chaoua, Rashid

flavicon
face
Yes, this is for work. We have design requirements that the safes we
install must also be able to destroy the contents.

I figure if you have reached the point where you must destroy the
contents of the safe you probably don't care much for the surrounding
area. However, the surrounding area is a mobile environment and if the
thermite grenade is detonated it will most likely destroy the vehicle
once it burns through the safe. I mean I guess this is more of an
operational scenario than anything.

I like some of the other ideas you guys have come up with. I was
figuring a combination of methods could also be applied. Such as
destroying the paper with one method and the electronic devices with
another, however, our customer has not been very forthcoming with the
types of documents that will be stored in the safe (Justifiably).

I have tried to search the net but believe it or not there is a great
amount of information regarding safe destruction other than some videos
I saw on you tube using a thermite grenade and a tank. I am pretty sure
the tank idea is out the window.

Rachid Chaoua
{Original Message removed}

2008\03\17@130103 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>However, the surrounding area is a mobile environment

This sounds like the safe should be installed in a security truck.

2008\03\17@130546 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Cedric Chang wrote:
> Really Rustle....   you act like this is an unusual request.  Several  
> times a month I have to firebomb various objects around the U.S.   I  
> just wait for a call from my handlers and zooooom , I am on my way.  

We thought as much, Cedric... <G>



2008\03\17@134749 by sergio masci

flavicon
face
On Mon, 17 Mar 2008, Chaoua, Rashid wrote:

{Quote hidden}

BTW you might also like to look up "oxygen candles" as a way of generating
oxygen within the safe. Maybe modify the mix to give you a faster hotter
burn, lots of oxygen and forget the "standard" thermite.

Regards
Sergio

2008\03\17@141942 by Martin

face
flavicon
face
sergio masci wrote:

>
> BTW you might also like to look up "oxygen candles" as a way of generating
> oxygen within the safe. Maybe modify the mix to give you a faster hotter
> burn, lots of oxygen and forget the "standard" thermite.
>
> Regards
> Sergio


What do you do with the extremely hot gasses that must be vented? When
you start mixing oxygen + fuel in a tightly closed box ...

-
Martin

2008\03\17@144232 by David VanHorn

picon face
> What do you do with the extremely hot gasses that must be vented? When
> you start mixing oxygen + fuel in a tightly closed box ...

The hot gas venting at the seams under pressure would serve as a
deterrent to anyone trying to open the box conventionally.

2008\03\17@145051 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On Mar 17, 2008, at 9:30 AM, Chaoua, Rashid wrote:

> I figure if you have reached the point where you must destroy the
> contents of the safe you probably don't care much for the surrounding
> area. However, the surrounding area is a mobile environment and if the
> thermite grenade is detonated it will most likely destroy the vehicle
> once it burns through the safe.

Thermite grenades don't "detonate" (technically speaking.)  However,  
my impression that the typical "thermite grenade" is aimed at  
destroying heavy equipment (truck engines/etc) by burning a hole  
through the metal parts, and is therefore poorly suited to  
destruction of more distributed but more sensitive material like  
paper and electronics.  It really ought to be possible to "tune" a  
safe/thermite combination to heat the contents of the safe to  
temperatures sufficient to destroy everything inside without melting  
through the safe itself (though the outside will certainly get plenty  
hot.)  My initial thought is simply to use a milder thermite or  
"gasless delay" type composition is lining for the entire safe -  
silicon/lead oxide for instance.  I would be surprised if there isn't  
something available from suitable "security" providers (thought it  
may require some interesting licensing...)

BillW

2008\03\17@150813 by sergio masci

flavicon
face


On Mon, 17 Mar 2008, David VanHorn wrote:

> > What do you do with the extremely hot gasses that must be vented? When
> > you start mixing oxygen + fuel in a tightly closed box ...
>
> The hot gas venting at the seams under pressure would serve as a
> deterrent to anyone trying to open the box conventionally.

I was going to suggest adding a hidden pressure release valve but this
sounds better :)

Regards
Sergio

2008\03\17@150844 by David VanHorn

picon face
Go heavy on the rust, and light on the aluminum.  Anything combustable
should be involved as the oxygen surplus builds.

2008\03\17@151031 by Chaoua, Rashid

flavicon
face
I agree that thermite grenades don't detonate. I guess I should say
ignite. I have seen a several videos of a thermite grenade destroying
the contents of a safe and it is messy to say the least.

I like your initial thoughts. If I could find a manufacture that does so
it would make this a lot easier. Right now we have no experts on site to
assist in the design of the destruction method.

You would be surprised at how many of these safe providers do not
provide a self-destruct for safes. Of course usually you want to keep
the contents inside the safe out of harms way.


Rachid Chaoua

{Original Message removed}

2008\03\17@152447 by Brian B. Riley

picon face
Thermite is an an exchange reaction. The oxygen comes from the mix.

FE2O3 + 2Al  gives  Al2O3 + 2Fe + copious  amounts of heat.

It requires a lot of heat to get started, usually ignited with a  
magnesium ribbon.

It was concocted to do field welds on railroad rails and was also  
found to be very handy for sabotage. The reaction produces molten  
iron, it doesn't burn through anything,   its just melts it. I had  
thermite grenades taped to the bipod/tripod legs of all my machine  
guns and mortars in Nam for quick access to destroy the weapon if we  
ever got overrun, which, fortunately, I never had to do. I did once  
raid a small NVA base camp and the thermite did a great job when left  
on the engine blocks of some old French trucks they had.

I have no experience specifically with thermite inside a safe, but my  
feeling is that  with the containment, the temps would get up to  
several thousand degrees long before it melted through the steel  
walls. There's no such thing as 'milder thermite' you would just have  
to limit the amount or possibly contaminate the mix with something  
inert like sand to slow it down..

cheers ... BBR

On Mar 17, 2008, at 2:49 PM, William Chops Westfield wrote:

{Quote hidden}

> --

2008\03\17@154142 by sergio masci

flavicon
face


On Mon, 17 Mar 2008, Brian B. Riley wrote:

{Quote hidden}

thermite is a name given to a group of compounds. Some mixes react much
more viloently than others and WILL actually explode. These are simple
mixes involving a metal oxide and a native metal. I wouldn't really like
to menthion the exact metals involved here.

Regards
Sergio

2008\03\17@162923 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On Mar 17, 2008, at 12:22 PM, Brian B. Riley wrote:

> There's no such thing as 'milder thermite'

That depends on how broadly you defined "thermite."  Traditional iron  
thermite is a member of a class of low gas solid phase oxidizer/metal  
"Goldschmidt reactions."  Depending on the choice of metal, oxidizer,  
and particle size, you can get reactions that go from a 30s/inch  
"delay" composition (tungsten/barium chromate) to near flash-powder  
burn rate and sensitivity (copper oxide/magnesium.)  There's a mix  
used in self-heating canned rations involving calcium silicide and  
iron oxide, for example...

BillW

2008\03\17@165629 by Brian B. Riley

picon face
I stand corrected then, though I still bristle at the thought of any  
thermite mixture being labeled as 'milder' ... my field thermite  
experiences  have been all with Fe/Al mixes in the military and a  
summer job with the LIRR. I would just class it all as varying degrees  
of hell ... never once using the adjective 'milder' ... sigh

cheers BBR

On Mar 17, 2008, at 4:28 PM, William Chops Westfield wrote:

{Quote hidden}

> --

2008\03\17@180055 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On Mar 17, 2008, at 1:56 PM, Brian B. Riley wrote:

> I would just class it all as varying degrees
> of hell ... never once using the adjective 'milder'

I made some of the 30s/inch tungsten/barium chromate mix once, cause  
I find slow burning mixtures particularly interesting.  It's very  
weird stuff.

(although, even the professional "welding" thermite is "mild"  
compared to the finely powdered mixtures that amateur would-be pyros  
put together.  I had a can of commercial thermite once, and the  
grains of Al and iron oxide with nearly kitty-litter sized...)

BillW

2008\03\17@191019 by Brian B. Riley

picon face
I guess the military stuff must be pretty fine .... when we took out  
those old French trucks we didn't even bother to lift their bonnets,  
we just pulled the pins on the thermite grenades and laid them on the  
hood, it almost instantly went through the sheet metal and dropped  
down onto the block. It lit up the whole compound. I would bet that  
engine was history before 20 seconds was up. I will say that on the 4  
klick run back to the extraction LZ it was a comfort to know that they  
wouldn't be chasing us with anything more than shank's mare!

 cheers ... BBR


On Mar 17, 2008, at 6:00 PM, William Chops Westfield wrote:

{Quote hidden}

> --

2008\03\17@233932 by Apptech

face
flavicon
face
There are  arange of other chemical reactions which liberate
energy with minimal gaseous products. A competent
pyrotechnic chemist should be able to advise. I'll post a
modified version of the quesry on a rocketry list and see
what responses we get.

       Russell

2008\03\18@000200 by Jesse Lackey

flavicon
face
Please post videos of your prototype testing!  :)
J


Chaoua, Rashid wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2008\03\18@072729 by sergio masci

flavicon
face


On Tue, 18 Mar 2008, Apptech wrote:

> There are  arange of other chemical reactions which liberate
> energy with minimal gaseous products. A competent
> pyrotechnic chemist should be able to advise. I'll post a
> modified version of the quesry on a rocketry list and see
> what responses we get.

Thermite produces little gas. There will still be a problem with the air
inside the safe being heated to a very high pressure.

Also, if you want to reduce the paper to ash rather than just charcoal you
will need to add oxygen and you will get CO2 / CO produced as a result -
yet more high temperature gas.

I don't think you have any choice but to build in a hidden pressure
release valve.

Regards
Sergio

2008\03\18@094514 by Apptech

face
flavicon
face
Phil from ARocket list says:



If you use excess oxidizer and there's lots of paper you are
going to get lots of high pressure gas. If you need the safe
to be of relatively low pressure a thermal method could be
difficult with lots of paper content. An excess of a
reactive metal reductant (Al/Mg etc) would convert the
CO/CO2 to carbon, but then it'll still be difficult to
ensure little gas as the excess of reductant will generate
H2/CH4 from reaction with the paper.... Furthermore, if you
just pyrolyze the paper contents (cellulose) without it
contacting the thermal chemical system you'll still get lots
of gases CO2/CO/CH2O/H2/CH4 etc generated. There are
solutions that readily dissolve cellulose but these wouldn't
work in the paper was wrapped in plastic or possibly with
some types of coated paper.
In thermite type mixtures the bigger the difference in the
reactivity between the oxidant (metal oxide) and the
reductant metal generally the greater the temperature and
energy released. It would be hard to cheaply exceed Al or Mg
as the reductant but Fe2O3 should be easy to better as an
oxidant .... one problem is if the temperature is very high
all sorts of normally high melting point solids could be
generated as gases.
Perhaps just pressurize/feed the safe with O2 like Apollo 1
ignite the contents and have a chemical system to
absorb/deal with the gases generated and keep the pressure
down... (or use an absorbing system with another oxidizer)
and have a limit of pounds of carbon based material the safe
can handle..... but isn't an incandescent safe going to be a
building fire hazard too :-) :-)
Phil.

2008\03\18@100516 by David VanHorn

picon face
> Also, if you want to reduce the paper to ash rather than just charcoal you
> will need to add oxygen and you will get CO2 / CO produced as a result -
> yet more high temperature gas.
>
> I don't think you have any choice but to build in a hidden pressure
> release valve.

How many safes have multiple O-Ring seals?

2008\03\18@105201 by sergio masci

flavicon
face


On Tue, 18 Mar 2008, David VanHorn wrote:

> > Also, if you want to reduce the paper to ash rather than just charcoal you
> > will need to add oxygen and you will get CO2 / CO produced as a result -
> > yet more high temperature gas.
> >
> > I don't think you have any choice but to build in a hidden pressure
> > release valve.
>
> How many safes have multiple O-Ring seals?

So you're saying the cracks around the door would allow the gases to
escape without blowing the door off?

I think it's time the OP did some experimenting and gave us some feedback
:)

BTW firesafes do have seals.

Regards
Sergio

2008\03\18@113222 by Chaoua, Rashid

flavicon
face
>From the trails I've seen the thermite can heat the interior air of the
safe to the extent that it blows the doors of off the safe. On the other
side I've seen the opposite occur. I assume it depends on the safe.

If they trusted me enough to get some thermite and go to town I would.
And if they do I will definitely post videos!

Rachid Chaoua

{Original Message removed}

2008\03\18@115327 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>So you're saying the cracks around the door would allow
>the gases to escape without blowing the door off?

'The Italian Job' comes to mind ....

2008\03\18@121507 by Dr Skip

picon face
IIRC, the OP didn't give a lot of detail on the reason for this need, except
that it was mobile. Chances are, it would be to prevent theft of the cargo in
the event the vehicle was hit or driver incapacitated by accident or force. In
an accident, fuel spillage is a real concern, as is oil. Any fancy fireworks
would create a dangerous situation for the occupants and the rescue workers...

Forget the thermite...

Place the safe on its back. Place properly sized tubes in the top (now the
door) to allow lye and water to be inserted in a manner consistent with the
destruction demands. Both chemicals will keep nicely, are common, and will
create a nice destructive reaction (including some caustic foaming through door
seal) that will not only destroy the contents but keep sticky fingers away at
the scene AND be easily neutralized by the rescue crew after the destruction.

The 2 components can also be kept in containers in the safe and electrically
released if need be. Properly designed, it could be made to release this way if
there were any damage to the exterior of the safe, like an impact, where the
'official' detonation mechanism was already removed by savvy thieves or an
accident.


2008\03\18@130712 by David VanHorn

picon face
United Nuclear has thermite mix and other interesting goodies for sale.

2008\03\18@171046 by Debbie

flavicon
face

--- "William \"Chops\" Westfield" <westfwspamKILLspammac.com> wrote:

>
> On Mar 17, 2008, at 12:22 PM, Brian B. Riley wrote:
>
> > There's no such thing as 'milder thermite'
>
> That depends on how broadly you defined "thermite."  Traditional iron  
> thermite is a member of a class of low gas solid phase oxidizer/metal  
> "Goldschmidt reactions." ...

Crikey, I too thought this thread was a bit of a St. Pat's day joke. :) But
seeing as you guys sound serious ...

Maybe do a Google or Wiki for something like "thermal OR thermite AND tape OR
foil". In particular see --> New Scientist Nov 2, 1996, pg 23: Wherever you
are, foil will fix it. Jonathan Beard.

A thermal foil employs a standard thermite (ie exothermic redox) reaction but
instead of powders like Fe2O3/Al dust that must be finely mixed, they employ
two reactive metals with a high chemical affinity, bonded together (bmo high
voltage sputtering) as a flat sheet. Ni & Al are a pair that's talked about in
the above article but other pairs of a transition element with a Group II or
Group III metal would be feasible. The reaction can be set off with small
current burst from a 9V battery and reaches 1600 deg C in milliseconds,
apparently. The thermal foil could presumably be made in A4 size or you could
lay out narrow tapes to cover an A4 document. If you placed a sheet impregnated
with KNO3 on either side and set it off, that would surely "involve" any
documents in proximity. The setup would lend itself to electronic control
(think PIC?!) and, being lightweight/low volume, you could probably design it
to "drop into" existing safes. The chemistry was experimental back in '96 but
there might be commercial products available by now. You'd doubtless need a
permit to buy it.  Also, you'd sure want plenty of safety locks built into the
design!
My 20c worth ... Debbie :)



     Get the name you always wanted with the new y7mail email address.
http://www.yahoo7.com.au/y7mail


2008\03\18@195654 by Apptech

face
flavicon
face
> Also, you'd sure want plenty of safety locks built into
> the
> design!

It occurred to me that if one wanted to seriously annoy the
owner of this safe, but one didn't have what it took to try
to liberate its contents with any chance of success, then
all that would be required would be to threaten his safe
with enough credibility to make it decide to hara-kiri.
Depending on the intrusion detection system employed this
may perhaps be triggered by a suitably high powered weapons
discharge (45 clear?) or a frenzied attack with a sledge
hammer or just maybe merely an urban compatible version of
EMP. My one time 10 kW 27 Mhz single tube self oscillating
plastic welder may have been enough to accomplish the deed.

"I dunno what happened, boss. This here large black van,
pulled up alongside us at the lights. There was a loud
humming sound and I felt warm all over, and then the safe
was toast. We had to dig it out of the road with a digger
coz it melted its way into the tarmac. I think we have some
of the cell phone numbers on Andy's system, but I think a
lot of the transaction records are lost, coz the backups
were on Jimmy's system, and ..."

Not a system I'd want to be responsible for the results from
:-).


       R

2008\03\18@212855 by Debbie

flavicon
face

--- Apptech <.....apptechKILLspamspam.....paradise.net.nz> wrote:

> > Also, you'd sure want plenty of safety locks built into
> > the
> > design!
>
> It occurred to me that if one wanted to seriously annoy the
> owner of this safe,.....
>
> Not a system I'd want to be responsible for the results from
> :-).

'Ere, 'ere! :)

D.


     Get the name you always wanted with the new y7mail email address.
http://www.yahoo7.com.au/y7mail


2008\03\19@084947 by sergio masci

flavicon
face


On Mon, 17 Mar 2008, Brian B. Riley wrote:

{Quote hidden}

Hi Brian,

I had a feeling thermite grenades weren't straight forward Fe/Al thermite.
I did some digging and found (wikipedia) that they contain a large amount
of Barium Nitrate and also some sulphur.

I think you could only go so far with an inert contaminant before it
actually snuffs out the reaction. Perhaps using a smaller amount of
thermite in a large thick iron shell would be better. Melting the shell
would absorb heat from the thermite.

Regards
Sergio

More... (looser matching)
- Last day of these posts
- In 2008 , 2009 only
- Today
- New search...