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Dynamite is an explosive made of nitroglycerin, sorbents (such as powdered shells or clay), and stabilizers. It was invented by the Swedish chemist and engineer Alfred Nobel in Geesthacht, Northern Germany, and was patented in 1867. It rapidly gained wide-scale use as a more robust alternative to the traditional black powder explosives. It allows the use of nitroglycerine's favorable explosive properties while greatly reducing its risk of accidental detonation.