WANO Schwarzpulver GmbH

Over 300 years of black powder manufacturing in Germany

Products / Market segments

» Black Powder History

» Fireworks-Grade Black Powder /
   Fuse Powder

» Sporting Powder /
   Cannon Powder

» Blasting Powder

» Military-Grade Black Powder

» Safety Fuses for
   Civil and Military Use

» Igniter Cords /
   Firework Fuses



Black powder is mankind's oldest explosive. It has been known in China since the 12th century and in Europe since the 14th century. Black powder is used for safety fuses, for pyrotechnic purposes, as a propellant powder in sport shooting, for special primers and for blasting in quarries, and in many cases it cannot yet be replaced by other explosives. . Black Powder is a deflagrating explosive but explodes very violently if ignited while it is confined. The highest determined propagation speed of the explosion under confinement is a maximum of 500 m/s. In terms of its composition black powder is a mechanical mixture of potassium nitrate, sulfur and charcoal.

Standard composition:
75 % Potassium nitrate
10 % Sulfur
15 % Charcoal

The black powder components constitute a fuel and an oxidizer simultaneously. Potassium nitrate acts as an oxygen carrier. Sulfur increases ignitability, impact sensitivity and smoke volume. It also reduces the formation of carbon monoxide in explosion smoke. Charcoal serves as a carbon (fuel) carrier.

The desired properties of the black powder are achieved by varying the composition, using different types of charcoal, adjusting the density, surface treatment, grain size and adding modifiers (i.e., graphite).

Thanks to the intensive and constant further development of its own production techniques, WANO now serves not only the traditional markets but also niche areas that are dependent on the great flexibility of the producer due to their special requirements. The production program includes more than 100 different varieties, all of which are approved and certified by the German competent authorities.

  WANO Schwarzpulver GmbH
Kunigunde 14  |  38704 Liebenburg, Germany  |  Phone: +49 (0) 53 46 / 95 00-0  |  Fax: +49 (0) 53 46 / 95 00-66