Jeannine - the only trouble with Growmore, is that if it gets wet, it turns to difficult to use gunk
the explosive stuff was just for interest, no need for a fuss
In the Battle of Somewhere, and the Battle of the Falkland Islands (the one with the Scharnhorst) Britain completely cut of the German's supply of Chile saltpeter, vital for explosives, essentially the world's only source. The consensus is that the War would have ended in 1916 without an alternative supply for Germany, so Mr Haber bears some responsibility for prolonging the war 2 years. The alternative process to Haber's for producing synthetic ammonia was the cyanamide process, tho the ammonia produced in this way was difficult to convert to nitric acid since the impurities in the gas poisoned the catalyst. Between 1915-Nov 1918 Haber-Bosch via BASF produced 414 million Marks worth of nitrogen compounds, of which only 24.5 M. Marks worth was for fertilisers. Presumably similar figures apply for cyanamide ammonia. The disastrous wheat harvests in Germany 1917-1918 are attributed to virtually all ammonia production being used for explosives.
I'd say that the foundation of the synthetic ammonia/nitrate industry was completely based on explosive manufacture
It's true to say that nitrates and ammonia aren't used in conventional explosives now, but all modern high explosives are made using nitric acid, via ammonia, so it's the same thing
I've forgotten how this started