Back in the 1990's Iraq was accused of having a missile-based weapon system that could deliver a mist of toxic gas over a large area through a two-phase explosion.

In the scenario that was painted in some mass media back then, the delivery mechanism would first detonate a mist of the toxic gas around the missile and after that would detonate a secondary explosion that spread the gas around a larger area.

I have been trying to find more possible details about this purported mechanism but cannot remember if these weapons or their delivery mechanisms where referred to by some name.

What was this weapon (or its mechanism) called?

  • 1
    Are you thinking of the Project Babylon "super-gun" project? Sep 12, 2020 at 12:57
  • @sempaiscuba: That all I can recall also Sep 12, 2020 at 13:04
  • thanks @sempaiscuba but this was separate from that project. If I remember correctly it was sometimes stated that this delivery mechanism could be installed in a (possibly modified) Scud missile and I think it had some relationship with the Scud. But the Wikipedia article on Scud missiles does not mention this kind of use (perhaps because it was not an actual weapon but something that was claimed that Iraq could have).
    – user100487
    Sep 12, 2020 at 13:08
  • 2
    Claimed by whom, exactly? Sep 12, 2020 at 13:24
  • 1
    Also, I doubt the description makes sense. It sounds like a garbled version of FAE.
    – Tomas By
    Sep 12, 2020 at 14:05

1 Answer 1


Most likely must have been some kind of speculative FAE weapon, described in Wikipedia article on Thermobaric weapons

A fuel–air explosive (FAE) device consists of a container of fuel and two separate explosive charges. After the munition is dropped or fired, the first explosive charge bursts open the container at a predetermined height and disperses the fuel (also possibly ionizing it, depending on whether a fused quartz dispersal charge container was employed) in a cloud that mixes with atmospheric oxygen (the size of the cloud varies with the size of the munition). The cloud of fuel flows around objects and into structures. The second charge then detonates the cloud, creating a massive blast wave.

There was this segment in an old pbs.org article

NARRATOR: In Germany, prosecutors are now investigating the aerospace giant Messerschmitt, Bolkow and Blohm for its involvement in Iraq's major missile program. Investigators are focusing on allegations that MBB, which developed NATO warheads, supplied warhead technology to the Iraqis, including an advanced and particularly lethal version called a "fuel-air explosive."


DAVID SAW, Military Technology Magazine: Fuel-air explosives are an extremely nasty and devastating weapon. When they are ignited, it creates a fireball and pressure effect that, in American tests, has been proven to be five times greater than TNT.

What's speculative is that I have not found anything about such weapons being used to deliver a toxic gas. These are explosives after all. If that's what the media actually stated then could be they got it garbled up or speculated on purpose.

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