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Solid Block




Only after activation





Blast resistance





Any tool




Yes (64)



First appearance

Classic 0.26 Survival Test (October 24, 2009)



Data value

dec: 46 hex: 2E bin: 101110



TNT is an explosive block that is placed and can be subsequently activated at the player's discretion to deliver a powerful blast in a desired area. Its explosion is generally lethal to most players at close range. Although TNT is powerful, it cannot damage blocks like Bedrock, Obsidian, End Portal Frame or an Anvil.

TNT can be used in traps or to demolish unwanted structures. TNT can also be used in certain cannons, useful for blowing up players at long range. TNT in water does not break blocks, but still damages mobs (including players).



Ingredients Crafting recipe

Gunpowder +
Sand or
Red Sand

Gunpowder SandRed Sand Gunpowder Grid layout Arrow (small).png TNT
SandRed Sand Gunpowder SandRed Sand
Gunpowder SandRed Sand Gunpowder

Natural Occurrence[edit]

TNT occurs naturally in Desert Temple traps.

Old TNT Block[edit]

In 1.7, the feature to use the original punch-detonating TNT block was added, by adding a dataValue of 1 to a TNT block. It can be placed with /setblock <position> minecraft:tnt 1 <tilename>. To disable the TNT item drop, use /gamerule doTileDrops false.


As a crafting ingredient[edit]

Name Ingredients Crafting recipe

Minecart with TNT


Grid layout Arrow (small).png Minecart with TNT



Can be activated by using an Activator Rail.


A TNT explosion in a superflat world

A TNT block can be activated by:

  • being right-clicked with flint and steel
  • a redstone current
  • being shot with a Flame-enchanted Arrow on the top of the block
  • being placed by a dispenser
  • being hit by a fire charge dispensed from a dispenser
  • coming into contact with spreading fire or lava
  • being in the blast radius of a nearby explosion, including that of another TNT block
  • traveling over an activator rail inside of a minecart.
  • falling from a height of more than three blocks in a minecart
  • summoned as lit tnt entity by a command block
  • inside a minecart, running into another minecart containing TNT

TNT explodes following a short delay once activated. If the block was activated by redstone or fire, the delay will be 4 seconds; if it was activated by a neighboring explosion, the delay is shorter.

Both activated and non-activated TNT can be safely pushed with pistons. Like any other block, it will stop as soon as the piston is fully extended; it is not launched.


Once activated, TNT begins its countdown timer. During the time between activation and explosion, TNT becomes an entity (Primed TNT) subject to physics, such as gravity. Activated TNT passes through other entities (but not solid blocks), notably including other primed TNT blocks.

Activation is confirmed when the TNT's texture begins to blink. It alternates between its standard texture and a pure white texture. It will also become subject to game physics (it starts falling if there is nothing under it, just like sand or gravel). When the countdown timer expires, the TNT explodes. Nearly all blocks, mobs, and players caught in the blast radius will take damage or be destroyed/killed outright. TNT detonated in a liquid will not destroy blocks unless in encapsulated in a sand or gravel block during detonation. TNT (not encapsulated) inside liquid will damage players and mobs, and propel entities. It is also known that TNT "destroys" flowing lava. If there is flowing lava in a TNT's explosion radius, it will be destroyed, but both lava and water source blocks are unaffected. Dropped items hit by the blast will be destroyed, but will be shielded by any block between it and the TNT. TNT is easily noticeable in traps as it makes a strange hissing noise, similar to the creeper, and makes a smoke particle effect. Note: TNT will not destroy any block at all if it (the TNT) is partially or fully in water.

TNT explosions are CPU- and RAM-intensive, so large explosions, and especially compound explosions from clusters of TNT blocks, can cause stuttering framerates or even game crashes, depending on system hardware. TNT will blow up 75% of all blocks around it, including the blocks under it and the dropped items near it.

Explosive force[edit]

The TNT blast will propagate according to the formula f=e-r, where f is the force of the TNT blast after propagating through the block, e is the energy of the blast before propagating through the block, and r is the blast resistance of the block. Thus, the explosion propagates farthest (7 blocks) through air, which has a blast resistance of zero. However, TNT immediately enclosed in stone will destroy an exact 3x3x3 cube originating from the center of the blast. The damage is usually lethal at close range.

Immune objects[edit]

Several blocks can survive TNT blasts, and will protect players shielded by them. These include Obsidian, Bedrock, liquid source blocks (with enough force, they can still be destroyed), Anvils, Enchantment Tables, Ender Chests, Command blocks, and End Portal Frame blocks. Note: un-immune objects completely surrounded by an immune object such as obsidian, will still be subject to the explosion if enough TNT is detonated around the area. This also means protected TNT blocks can be detonated without coming into direct contact with an explosion. When building a shelter keep in mind that blasts can travel diagonally, so an obsidian box with missing corners/edges will fail to properly shield its occupants.

Immune objects allow for bomb shelters, a sealed world, and TNT Cannons. In addition, a player or mob sitting in a minecart will take minimal damage from a TNT explosion, and this effect allows them to be launched great distances.

Water or lava as a blast controller[edit]

Because of the high blast resistance of water and lava, blocks placed behind them will be completely protected from TNT explosions, and primed TNT exploding directly inside a water or lava block won't destroy anything. A one-block-thick water screen will stop most explosions from reaching the other side, however, a player laying multiple blocks of TNT should mind the placement of the explosives, as primed TNT entities may launch each other through the water screen. Using water or lava this way lets you use TNT near an important area, such as a house, base, or ore vein.

Thus, a player can use this to dig a big quarry or hole precisely and quickly by placing a "curtain" of water on the extremities of said hole and dynamiting the center. A player could also make a TNT trap that drops TNT into a block of water, preserving the blocks around it but damaging or killing the mob that activated it.


See also: Tutorials/Traps

TNT traps can be created by connecting them via redstone to Pressure Plates. Concealing the TNT in such a trap just below ground level effectively creates a land mine.

For TNT to receive a redstone circuit's signal, redstone needs to be directed straight into it from at least one of four sides, from either the Layer the TNT is based on, or above or below one layer. Diagonally adjacent entry will not make a connection. Redstone next to TNT will also set off the TNT, even if it is not directly connected with it (through a T connection not directly connected, or an "I" connection running parallel alongside it). TNT will not be set off immediately if current is activated prior to placement of the TNT. Redstone torches will activate a TNT block as well if directly under the TNT block, or under a block on which the TNT rests.

Other uses[edit]

TNT can be used to destroy monster spawners. They have a high blast resistance (25), but are easily destructible with a single block of TNT.

TNT is useful in clearing large amounts of dirt or gravel when mining underground, or for clearing large volumes of underground area indiscriminately for underground building projects. However, since it will wind up destroying most dropped items, it is of no use in breaking blocks to collect their resources.


  • TNT Cannons: Because primed TNT is affected by physics, it can be used as a projectile that is propelled by another TNT explosion.
  • Rocket-jumping: TNT can be used to propel players, though heavy/enchanted armor will likely be required to survive the blast. With an adjacent water block and a well-timed jump, it may be possible to avoid damage.
  • Arrow Cannon: TNT can be used to propel a large number of arrows. Distanced propelled depends on the amount of TNT used. Destruction of terrain can be avoided by placing a water source next to the TNT.
  • Spleef arenas: Because they are destroyed in one hit, they work better than dirt or other materials and do not need a tool to be destroyed. This use depends on no player coming in with items that could be used to activate TNT; or else a plugin that disables explosions can be used.
  • Griefing

Primed TNT[edit]

[edit]Primed TNT
Network ID


Savegame ID


Primed TNT is an entity. It is spawned at the center (+0.5,+0.5,+0.5) of a powered TNT block, while itself is a cube with an edge length of 0.98. Its fuse lasts 40 (redstone) ticks (4 seconds/80 game ticks) if activated by redstone or fire, or a random number between 10 to 30 game ticks (.5 to 1.5 seconds) if it's destroyed by an explosion.

Once spawned, primed TNT is given a vertical velocity of 0.2 m/tick, and a horizontal velocity of 0.02 m/tick in a random direction. If it does not collide with another block, it will travel 0.166m horizontally on flat ground before it stops and explodes.

A TNT primed with redstone or fire will flash eight times before exploding.



0.26 SURVIVAL TEST 9 TNT was added.
When TNT was added in Survival Test, it acted similar to how it did in beta 1.6. Players would have to hit it to prime the block, but the difference was players could hit it again to cancel the detonation.
0.27 SURVIVAL TEST 10 The player started with 10 blocks of TNT in the inventory.
0.29 TNT now works in creative mode.
You can no longer pick up an already lit TNT block.
0.30 Hitting an already active TNT block now defuses it and allows you to pick it up.
1.6 TNT's texture was rotated.
1.7 TNT can no longer be directly primed by the user, but only by Redstone or any other mechanism that powers the TNT block, as well as by right clicking with Flint and Steel. Hitting the block will simply and safely destroy the block so it can be picked up.
Monster traps can no longer be created by putting a Pressure Plate directly on top of the block of TNT.
TNT can no longer have torches placed on it. Any torches that were placed previously will disappear.
1.8 The smoke textures from TNT explosion have been replaced by shockwaves.
Official release
1.0.0 Beta 1.9-pre5 TNT's texture was slightly changed.
1.0.0-RC1 The 'Sound Update' of November 13th 2011 gave TNT a new explosion sound.
1.3.1 12w21a TNT can be naturally found (with structure generation turned on) in Desert Temples as a trap in the treasure room. It's a 3x3 square of 9 TNT under a sandstone floor with a stone Pressure Plate on the center sandstone block.
1.3-pre TNT no longer damages the player in Peaceful difficulty.
1.4.2 12w34b TNT can now be ignited using Fire Aspect swords and Flame bows (arrows).
1.5 13w04a TNT is now primed when released from a dispenser.
1.7 TNT with the data value of 1 can now be primed by hitting it. (Similar to pre-beta 1.7 versions)
1.8 14w27b TNT's top texture is now rotated randomly, as part of the addition of arrays to Block models.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.1.0 TNT could not be obtained except for via a hex editor. When edited in, the primed TNT would simply emit smoke particles, then disappear.
0.2.0 Edited-in TNT can be successfully primed and detonated.
0.4.0 TNT is now able to be obtained without a hex editor in both survival and creative.
0.7.0 There is a bug which TNT can be burnt on fire, but it disappears without priming.
0.8.0 build 4 Fixed above bug, and can be ignited by fire and lava.
0.9.0 build 1 Improved the performance of TNT.
Console Edition
TU1 Added TNT.
TU3 TNT can no longer be directly primed by the user, but only by Redstone or any other mechanism that powers the TNT block, as well as by right clicking with Flint and Steel. Hitting the block will simply and safely destroy the block so it can be picked up.
TU5 Changed the explosion sound of TNT.
TU14 TNT now make a sound before exploding.
TNT does variable damage depending on difficulty setting.
Pi Edition
0.1.1 Added TNT.


Issues relating to "TNT" are maintained on the issue tracker. Report issues there.


  • "TNT" stands for Trinitrotoluene. However, the use of sand in the crafting recipe references dynamite, a different high explosive consisting of nitroglycerine mixed with diatomaceous earth (which is mostly silica, the same chemical compound as yellow sand).
  • In Beta TNT could be lit by breaking it.
  • Using the command /setblock ~ ~ ~ tnt 1 <oldblockHandling> <dataTag> will create a block of TNT at your location that will prime when broken like old TNT.
  • An activated or "primed" block of TNT will fall 77 blocks before exploding.
  • Destroying TNT makes the same sound as destroying a grass block.
  • Similar to arrows, primed TNT will catch on fire if it is shot through lava.
  • Primed TNT will explode immediately if summoned on default. That is because the fuse of the summoned TNT is 0 ticks unless specified via data tags.
  • If TNT is blown up just as an arrow passes by, then the arrow is redirected opposite of the blast.
  • Detonating a large amount of TNT may cause Minecraft to severely lag or even crash.
  • To have a TNT block drop down and destroy blocks underwater, before the redstone current is applied, a block of gravel should be added on top of the TNT. The gravel will fall with the TNT, the TNT will land below the water, and the gravel will land and form a block around the TNT, which will allow the TNT to destroy blocks underwater. Sand will work as well.
  • TNT and Slime Blocks are the only solid block that breaks instantly (When not in creative).
  • Although Flint & Steel cannot light fires in Adventure Mode, it can still ignite TNT.
  • While under the effects of a Potion of Night Vision, TNT will appear fullbright as usual, but will ignore the potion's effect and take on the light around it when primed, because it's an entity when it's primed.
  • If TNT, when primed, hops up and just barely lands on a block directly below and next to it,and then slides off, the TNT will fall, but the explosion will appear where the TNT almost landed before sliding off.
  • By combining TNT cannons and player launching devices, one can make a "firework base" that shoots TNT into the air, letting it explode like professional-grade fireworks in real life. This is more impressive in skill than real fireworks, since the smoke butt effect will be distinguishable from fireworks.
  • When the player primes TNT and the primed block falls into the end, the TNT block will detonate when the player enters the end. This gives the player an opportunity to detonate hundreds of TNT blocks instantaneously. However it is not advised because if the player puts too much TNT in the portal, when the player enters the end, the game may crash.
  • You can see primed TNT from about (at the most) 70 blocks away.
  • As of 1.5 , Mobs killed by player-ignited TNT (via Flint and Steel or by flaming arrows) will drop EXP orbs as though they were killed by the player in regular combat. This makes for effective EXP and mob drop farming.
    • TNT ignited via Redstone signals or Fire will otherwise cause mobs to drop no EXP.
  • The crafting recipe for TNT (sand and gunpowder) may be a reference to the fact that early gunpowder was made by mixing powders together (sulfur, saltpeter and charcoal), and to the fact that Creeper gunpowder used to be called Sulfur. Real-life TNT is made by repeatedly treating toluene with concentrated nitric and sulfuric acids.
  • When primed TNT is directed towards a Nether Portal, it will only pass through said blocks and not travel into the Nether. (Tested with a TNT cannon).
  • Although primed TNT will get caught in Cobwebs, TNT propelled fast enough will fly through them without slowing down at all.
  • Theoretically, an infinite amount of primed TNT can fit into one cubic meter because primed TNT will not collide with other primed TNT. Falling sand and gravel entities will react accordingly to a detonation, scattering from the point of origin, and will fall through the TNT when it is triggered. If sand or gravel fall through primed TNT while it is underwater, the TNT will detonate normally, causing an explosion.
  • A consistent method of crashing Minecraft is to start a superflat world with a layer of TNT, then set it off. The number of concurrent explosions rises exponentially to infinity. The game will crash shortly after due to the unimaginable explosions. The map will become unplayable forever until it is deleted.
  • It takes 19.75 blocks to fall for it to reduce the timer for one second.
  • TNT does no damage to the player in water in the Xbox 360 version of Minecraft.
  • One block of TNT appears to be a bundle of 16 sticks of dynamite (TNT). If the top of the block is examined, a fuse texture can be made out with individual strings connecting to 16 white squares, indicating the TNT block is a cluster bomb of sorts.
  • A TNT primed by detonated TNT has a fuse of one second.


See also[edit]