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These DisnBachmann had a national defense grant to develop a synthesis for an explosive, 988 Sheehan, John C. Inventors and Inventions cyclotrimethylenetrinitroamine, code-named RDX and called cyclonite. Bachmann and Sheehan developed a method to synthesize large quantities of RDX by nitration of hexamethylenetetramine. RDX was a very useful explosive, replacing trinitrotoluene (TNT) as the main explosive in rockets, bombs, and torpedoes. Sheehan also isolated another explosive, cyclotetramethylenetetranitramine (HMX), as a by-product of theRDXproject. Sheehan went to work for Merck and Company in Rahway, New Jersey, in 1941. While at Merck, Sheehan was involved in several outstanding projects, including the new synthesis of calcium pantothenate, the purification of streptomycin, and the purification of penicillin.