Understanding Ammunition and Explosive Storage Magazines
November 2, 2021
Anytime you bring a large amount of ammunition or explosives together in one location, you have a potentially dangerous—and deadly—situation on your hands.
It could be a literal powder keg.
To help mitigate the risks, you need a structural ammunition and explosive storage magazine (or, in some cases, multiple magazines) that will keep a blast from propagating while protecting both resources and lives.
But what exactly are structural ammunition and explosive storage magazines? How can they be used? And who is qualified to build them?
As one of the world leaders in producing blast-resistant, hardened, and robust modular buildings, CoverSix has the answers you need to understand both industry terminology and manufacturer capabilities to help you make the best, most well-informed decision for you and your organization.
What are structural ammunition and explosive storage magazines?
In short, ammunition and explosive storage magazines are stand-alone structures that protect and secure large amounts of munitions while preventing chain reactions that could occur as the result of a single blast event.
Magazines come in various shapes and sizes—like small containers that can fit within a building or large stand-alone structures. For example, at CoverSix, we produce Type 2 ammunition and explosive storage magazines, which are defined as mobile and portable indoor/outdoor magazines. These buildings can be as simple as an 8’ x 8’ x 8,’ one-room structure, all the way up to a multi-room facility consisting of several thousand square feet.
For comparison, other options for storing highly explosive materials are Type 1 ammunition magazines which are permanent (non-moveable) structures, and Type 3 magazines which are simple “day boxes” that can be placed within another structure.
Common features to look for in an ammunition magazine include a solid steel exterior, interior walls lined with military-grade hardwoods, reinforced floors, and a blast-resistant door.
Who uses Type 2 magazine storage?
While these ammunition magazines are most commonly found in military settings, they are perfect for anyone who has amassed a large quantity of ammunition or explosives. These include police departments, shooting ranges, and even firework manufacturers and vendors. In fact, cruise ships that put on nightly firework displays for their passengers have recently begun to place explosive magazine storage directly on the ship.
Benefits of Type 2 ammunition and explosive magazines
Like all modular structures, Type 2 ammunition magazines offer several unique advantages over those built through traditional construction methods.
First of all, Type 2 ammunition magazines are completely portable, so if you ever need to move your stockpile to another location, all you have to do is move the magazine—try doing that with an earth-covered magazine.
Second, since Type 2 magazines are modular, you can always add or remove units as your needs change.
Lastly, these modular facilities are built in a fraction of the time it takes to construct a brick-and-mortar structure and often have a much lower overall price tag. And since Type 2 ammunition magazines are built offsite, there is little to no interruption to your operation.
There are numerous regulations and specifications set forth by various governmental agencies regarding ammunition and explosive magazines. You’ll want to make sure your explosive storage magazine manufacturer either meets, or exceeds ATF specs 27 CFR 555.208 and U.S. military specs DoD 5100.76M, AR 190-11 and OPNAVINST 5530.13C. Additionally, a project for the U.S. Department of Defense will require the magazine to meet the Navy’s NSWC-3046-93-1 specifications.
A variety of manufacturers, including CoverSix, are now able to meet all of the requirements of NSWC 3046-93-1 and can certify their magazine to this specification. A magazine certified to meet NSCW-3046-93-1 provides the protection you need, and now offers a competitive marketplace in which to procure it.
Taking the Next Step with Ammo Storage
If you’re looking for safety, security, flexibility, and adaptability in an ammunition and explosive magazine, a Type 2 structure could be the perfect fit. These modular structures keep property and personnel safe while offering an excellent long-term investment. But remember, even if you’re in the U.S. military, when it comes to ammunition and explosive magazines, you have options. Always shop around to find the unit—and the manufacturer—that best meets your needs.