The pilot who stole a secret Soviet fighter jet.
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The bomb was 8m long 26ft , had a diameter of nearly 2. View image of Novaya Zemlya Credit: Alamy. Tsar Bomba was no ordinary nuclear bomb. It was more than a metal monstrosity too big to fit inside even the largest aircraft — it was a city destroyer, a weapon of last resort. A smaller, modified Tu bomber flew beside, ready to film the ensuing blast and monitor air samples as it flew from the blast zone. The bomb would slowly drift down to a predetermined height — 13,ft 3,m — and then detonate. By then, the two bombers would be nearly 50km 30 miles away.
It should be far enough away for them to survive. Tsar Bomba detonated at , Moscow time. In a flash, the bomb created a fireball five miles wide. The fireball pulsed upwards from the force of its own shockwave. The flash could be seen from 1,km miles away. It must have been, from a very far distance perhaps, an awe-inspiring sight. On Novaya Zemlya, the effects were catastrophic.
In the village of Severny, some 55km 34 miles from Ground Zero, all houses were completely destroyed this is the equivalent to Gatwick airport being destroyed by a bomb that had fallen on Central London. In Soviet districts hundreds of miles from the blast zone, damage of all kinds — houses collapsing, roofs falling in, damage to doors, windows shattering — were reported.
Radio communications were disrupted for more than an hour. One Soviet cameraman who witnessed the detonation said:. The sea of light spread under the hatch and even clouds began to glow and became transparent. At that moment, our aircraft emerged from between two cloud layers and down below in the gap a huge bright orange ball was emerging.
The Sanitized Rhetoric That Makes Nuclear War More Likely | Essay | Zócalo Public Square
The ball was powerful and arrogant like Jupiter. Slowly and silently it crept upwards Having broken through the thick layer of clouds it kept growing. It seemed to suck the whole Earth into it. The spectacle was fantastic, unreal, supernatural. If an 18 kiloton nuclear bomb was dropped in New York, the damage would spread all the way across to Jersey City and over to much of Brooklyn.
According to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, nine countries together possess around 15, nuclear weapons. This image shows the detonation of a nuclear bomb at a test site, with the distinctive mushroom cloud visible. Cities around the world, including Sydney pictured left and Los Angeles pictured right would be wiped out if a nuclear bomb was dropped. According to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons , nine countries together possess around 15, nuclear weapons. The US and Russia maintain roughly 1, of their nuclear weapons on high-alert status — ready to be launched within minutes of a warning.
Most are many times more powerful than the atomic bombs dropped on Japan in A single nuclear warhead, if detonated on a large city, could kill millions of people, with the effects persisting for decades. This photograph shows the terrible effects of atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, Japan, on 6 August, Surviving the effects of a nuclear explosion depend on factors including the device and bomb size, where it was detonated, the nature of the target and weather conditions.
But with each factor-of-seven increase in time one hour, seven hours, 49 hours etc the radiation is reduced by a factor of To see if you are at risk, when you see a mushroom cloud, hold your arm out and shut one eye and raise your thumb. If the cloud is bigger than your thumb you are in the radiation zone and need to evacuate.
Within one week of radiation you may feel dizziness, disorientation, weakness, fatigue, hair loss, bloody vomit and stools, poor wound healing, and low blood pressure.
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After one week death is a possibility. The belief in "overkill" is also commonly encountered, with an example being the following statement made by nuclear disarmament activist Philip Noel-Baker in — "Both the US and the Soviet Union now possess nuclear stockpiles large enough to exterminate mankind three or four — some say ten — times over".
Brian Martin suggested that the origin of this belief was from "crude linear extrapolations", and when analyzed it has no basis in reality. According to the United Nations report General and Complete Disarmament: Comprehensive Study on Nuclear Weapons: Report of the Secretary-General , it was estimated that there were a total of about 40, nuclear warheads in existence at that time, with a potential combined explosive yield of approximately 13, megatons. However, it must be noted that comparisons with supervolcanos are more misleading than helpful due to the different aerosols released, the likely air burst fuzing height of nuclear weapons and the globally scattered location of these potential nuclear detonations all being in contrast to the singular and subterranean nature of a supervolcanic eruption.
Nonetheless, many people believe that a full-scale nuclear war would result, through the nuclear winter effect, in the extinction of the human species , though not all analysts agree on the assumptions inputted into these nuclear winter models. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. See also: Cobalt bomb and Nuclear winter. Main article: Nuclear winter. Main article: Nuclear famine. See also: Nuclear electromagnetic pulse and High-altitude nuclear explosion.
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The Consequences of Nuclear War
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