Explosives and ammunition are stowed in
magazines or areas designated for the specific
materials. NAVSEASYSCOM designs and designates
all magazines or storage areas. The type and amount of
material that may be stowed in any magazine depends
on the type of magazine in relation to the explosive
safety quantity-distance requirements.
Types of Magazines
Magazines located at naval air stations and other
naval installations are of various sizes, types of
construction, and classes, depending upon the nature of
the material to be stowed. Magazines are designated as
high-explosive magazines, smokeless-powder mag-
azines, and ready-service magazines according to their
intended use. Magazines are further classified by type
covered, or barricaded.
smokeless powder, pyrotechnics, loaded projectiles,
fixed ammunition, small-arms ammunition, and other
fire or missile hazard materials are of two general
typesthe rectangular, earth-covered magazine and
the concrete, triple-arch, earth-covered magazine.
The rectangular, earth-covered magazine (50
feet by 100 feet) is constructed of reinforced
magazine has three arches. The combined
arches make up a single magazine; however,
each arch is separated by a minimum of 10 feet
at the door, and the space is filled with dirt. The
standard floor size of each arch in the
triple-arch construction is 25 feet by 80 feet.
Each of the three arches may be used for a
different type of compatible material.
Magazines constructed since 1928 that are used for
storing high explosive, bomb-type ammunition, and
other explosive hazard materials are made of reinforced
concrete, single-arch, earth-covered type construction
and they are barricaded at the entrance end. These
magazines have been constructed in three sizes:
The 25 feet by 50 feet and the 25 feet by 40 feet
sizes are suitable for the stowage of 250,000
pounds net weight of explosives.
The 25 feet by 80 feet size is suitable for the
stowage of 500,000 pounds net weight of
Additionally, the following miscellaneous types of
magazines may be found at certain establishments.
KEYPORT - The keyport magazine is earth-
covered and arch-shaped with a prefabricated concrete
construction. It has interior floor dimensions of 6 feet
by 8 feet 8 inches. The height of the arch is
approximately 6 feet.
BOX - A box magazine is of concrete construction,
rectangular shape, and normally measures 12 feet by 17
CORBETTA - A corbetta magazine is of concrete
construction and is shaped like a beehive or dome.
GALLERY - A gallery magazine is a tunnel or
cave, and the dimensions will vary.
MISCELLANEOUS OR NONSTANDARD -
The physical dimensions of the miscellaneous or
nonstandard magazine depend on the type of stowed
material and the location of the magazine.
OPEN STORAGE - The type and amount of
explosives stowed in open stowage depend on the size
and location of the storage area.
Explosive Safety Quantity-Distance (ESQD)
ammunition, explosives, and other hazardous materials
at Naval Shore Establishments for development;
manufacturing; test and maintenance; storage, loading
and off-loading of vehicles, railcars and aircraft;
disposal; and all related handling incidents.
requirements are based on records of actual fires and
explosions involving ammunition and explosives.
possible serious injury or equipment destruction from
possible fires or explosions. These requirements also
protect the inhabitants of nearby communities, private
and public property, and the Naval Shore Establishment
personnel. These requirements keep the loss of
valuable ammunition stores (including inert ordnance
items) to a minimum if there were a fire or explosion.