Nuclear weapons

Whenever we come across this term, we often think about their deadly consequences on mankind. But before moving this further we might take a peek into the past. The idea of Nuclear weapons became possible only when Otto Hahn, Lise Meitner, and Fritz Strassman, three Nuclear physicists, discovered Nuclear fission in a lab which is situated in Berlin, Germany.

Nuclear weapons, or atomic bombs, get their explosive energy from fission reaction, the one which was discovered by those three nuclear physicists in Berlin. When an atom of radioactive material splits into lighter atoms, there is a sudden and powerful release of energy. This is the theory of nuclear fission. This discovery opened up many possibilities of nuclear technologies, and its worst side, Nuclear weapons. Nuclear weapons are more destructive and devastating than conventional bombs. The detonation of the bomb has three main effects, a blast that can flatten cities, intense heat which can literally burn down skin and radiation for a longer period of time. With the detonation of the bomb, a fireball occurs and the temperature reaches as must as that of Sun’s core. 85 percent of the energy produced is the air blast and thermal radiation. Remaining 15 percent is released as initial radiation. Then there is sudden expansion of extremely hot gases at extremely high pressure in a nuclear fireball which generates a shock wave that expands outward at high velocity. The force is so high that it could uproot a big tree and even break down concrete buildings. When the shock wave approaches it feel like a wind that shakes a standing person against a wall with a great force and sometimes person faces some serious injuries also due to falling because of the shock. Enormous amount of glass, wood and other debris created by initial shock wave will fly at a velocity above 160 km per hour.


Moving on in the history, the first nuclear project was “The Manhattan Project”. It was the code name for the American-led effort to develop a functional atomic bomb. This happened during the period of World War II. In 1945, July 16, a test was done to check a nuclear bomb which became the first nuclear bomb after that. This testing was done in a remote desert which is situated near Alamogordo, New Mexico. Its name was – “The Trinity Test”. The test was successful; it created about 40,000 feet enormous mushroom cloud.

But, here comes the worst part. In 1945 another group of scientists who are from Los Alamos had developed two different types of atomic bombs. One was based on uranium while the other one was based on plutonium, and they were named as “The Little Boy” and “The Fat Man”. On August 6, 1945 a bomb was dropped by The United States named as “The Little Boy” on Hiroshima. 80,000 people died instantly due to the 13 Kilotons of force, 1 Kiloton is equivalent to thousands of tons of TNT. More died later due to radiation. Just after three days of the incident, another bomb was dropped on Nagasaki; “The Fat Man” killed about 40,000 peoples on impact. Those two incidents were the reason behind the ending of the World War II. The war was over, but the price was paid by lakhs of peoples. Since then lots of other successful testing were done and even more powerful weapons are built. Around 1950 The Cold War started and during the cold war many countries created and stocked several nuclear weapons. In the year 1961, Soviet Union created the largest nuclear weapon ever tested. Its explosive yield was 50 Megatons, compared to the Hiroshima boom which was just 15 Megatons. Soon mankind came to know the devastating consequences of Nuclear Warheads. Several social gatherings and protest march against nuclear war were conducted by millions of peoples around the globe. In 1982, one million people marched in New York City protesting against Nuclear Arms Race. It was one of the largest political protests in the history of the United States.

At least 2,053 nuclear tests are conducted in atmosphere, underwater and underground. Their combined explosive yield is 40,000 Little Boys, Hiroshima Bomb. There are more than 15,000 nuclear warheads existing today, of which Russia has 7500 and US has 7000. Average destruction of each warhead will cover about 50 miles radius of instant destruction. Eight countries declared about having Nuclear weapons, France, Russia, Pakistan, India, US, China, North Korea and UK.

Among the top 10 nuclear bomb ever created, user or tested are:

The 10th position is acquired by “The Little Boy” of Hiroshima.

The 9th position is acquired by “The Fat Man” of Nagasaki.

The 8th position is acquired by “The Ivy Mike Nuclear Testing”, which was tested by United States.

The 7th position is acquired by “The Hurricane Atomic Bomb”, which was tested by United Kingdom in 1952.

The 6th position is acquired by “The Mark-21 Nuclear Bomb”, which was tested by United States in 1954.

The 5th position is acquired by “The Mark-36 Nuclear Bomb”, which was created by United States.

The 4th position is acquired by “The Castle Bravo Hydrogen Bomb”.

The 3rdposition is acquired by “The B-53 Nuclear Bomb” created by United States.

The 2nd position is acquired by “The B-41 Nuclear Bomb” created by United States.

The 1st position is acquired by “The Tsar Bomba” which was created by Russia having a yield of 50 Megatons.

Not only human beings, but nature also gets affected on a devastating level. The explosion vaporises life forms in the target zone. The Little boy which was detonated in Hiroshima cleared about 4.4 square mile radius of area. No life form in that region survived. Humans and animals who survived, suffered from radiation poisoning. Exploding a nuclear bomb over the ground surface can add harmful radiation particles into stratosphere resulting into global fallout and many harmful effects in the atmosphere. When animals, plants or humans come in contact to this radiation, their DNA can get altered. Dense smokes of nuclear war would also block sunlight which could bring in Nuclear Winters. And in that condition, even a slightest nuclear detonation would deplete the O-zone layer. Also so many bombs would result in a much higher radiation level globally. Finally it would transform into global nuclear fallout along with nuclear winter.

Nuclear Weapon is a threat to human kind. It could lead us towards extinction. And finally the world would come to an end.

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