A University of Bristol graduate student inadvertently synthesized approximately 40 g of triacetone triperoxide (TATP) on Friday, prompting building evacuations and a controlled detonation by an explosives team, chemistry professor and Faculty of Science dean Timothy C. Gallagher has confirmed to C&EN. No one was injured in the incident.
The TATP was in solution and not isolated as a solid. When the student realized what had happened, the student handled the situation very responsibly, Gallagher says. Further response by the department, university, and emergency personnel “went like clockwork,” Gallagher adds.
Gallagher says that he is “absolutely convinced” that the preparation of TATP was unintentional rather than deliberate or with malicious intent....I will be very interested to read more about this when the report is (hopefully) released to the public.