Sunday, August 2, 2020

First test of nuclear explosion

During the late 1930s, scientists from all over the world rushed to develop the first atomic bomb. Fearing that Nazi-governed Germany would be the first to construct such a dangerous weapon, Albert Einstein wrote a letter to warn President Roosevelt of the possible dangers. In response, the U.S. began modest nuclear research.

The first formal arrangements for the test were made in March 1944 with the formation, in George Kistiakowsky’s Explosives Division, of group X-2 under the leadership of Kenneth T. Bainbridge.

The world's first nuclear explosion occurred on July 16, 1945, at 5.30 am when a plutonium implosion device was tested at a site located 210 miles south of Los Alamos on the barren plains of the Alamogordo Bombing Range, known as the Jornada del Muerto. The nuclear device known as “Gadget” was successfully detonated.

A multi-colored cloud surged 38,000 feet into the air within seven minutes. Where the tower had been was a crater one-half mile across and eight feet deep.

At various times between June 1946 and November 1962, atmospheric and underground tests were conducted by the United States in the Marshall Islands, Christmas Island, Johnston Atoll in the Pacific Ocean, and over the South Atlantic Ocean. Between January 1951 and July 1962, atmospheric and underground nuclear tests were conducted at the NTS (The Nevada Test Site).

The Nevada Test Site is 65 miles north of Las Vegas, was one of the most significant nuclear weapons test sites in the United States.

Since July 1962, all nuclear tests conducted in the United States have been underground, and most of them have been at the Nevada Test Site. Some tests were conducted on the Nellis Air Force Range (NAFR); in central and northwestern Nevada; in Colorado, New Mexico, and Mississippi; and on Amchitka, one of the Aleutian Islands off the coast of Alaska.
First test of nuclear explosion

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