Nuclear Weapons

How do nuclear weapons work?

We all are familiar with the story of Japan. At the end of the Second World War, the US dropped two bombs that wiped out the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Japan surrendered after this and thus ended the great war. Nuclear weapons are weapons of mass destruction and can irreparably damage life and the environment. But how do nuclear weapons work? Nuclear weapons release huge amounts of energy in a massive explosion. This explosion is caused by an uncontrolled nuclear fission and nuclear fusion.

nuclear weapons

 These reactions are capable of releasing immense energy from a relatively small amount of matter. Nuclear bomb blasts will be followed by fire and deadly radiations.

Why are Little Boy and Fat Man famous?

Little Boy is the first ever nuclear weapon used in warfare. It was designed like a gun. One mass of uranium was fired down through a cylinder to another mass and this created a self-sustaining nuclear reaction. Little Boy was dropped on Hiroshima on 6th August, 1945. Though it was of a relatively small size, the bomb had a huge explosive capability. It also created ultra-high pressure where it was dropped. Three days later, Fat Man, another atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. This was the second nuclear weapon released by the US. Around 75,000 people were killed in the explosion. This was followed by many deaths caused by the radiations.

What do we know about fission weapons?

Fission weapons are devices that produce massive amounts of energy by splitting the nuclei of heavy elements such as uranium or plutonium. This massive release of energy will result in an explosion. They are typically made of materials containing high concentrations of radio isotopes such as uranium-235 or plutonium-239. A series of fissions that occur rapidly results in a chain reaction inside a fission weapon that consumes the majority of the fissile material. This results in a massive explosion. Fission weapons are also referred to as atomic bombs or atom bombs.

How does a fusion weapon work?

Fusion weapons are powered by enriched uranium or plutonium. The fuel materials are combined to form supercritical mass. The supercritical mass sets off a rapid chain reaction that culminates in an explosion. The fission process is also used in fusion bombs. Would you like to know how? A fission bomb is placed near the fusion fuel in a fusion bomb. The fusion reaction is started by the explosion of the fission bomb. A fusion bomb is more powerful than a fission bomb. A pure fusion weapon is a type of weapon. It is the design of a hypothetical hydrogen bomb that does not require fission to initiate fusion between the two hydrogen isotopes, deuterium and thallium.

Which is the most destructive nuclear weapon?

The neutron bomb is the most destructive among nuclear weapons. It makes use of fusion to increase the production of radiation that is way higher than a usual atomic bomb. The fusion reaction bursts the neutrons, but this is not absorbed inside like other nuclear weapons. On the contrary, it is allowed to escape. The burst of high energy neutrons is highly destructive. This is because neutrons penetrate deeper than any other forms of radiation. Therefore, the usual shielding materials are not so effective against neutron bombs. In fact, these bombs maximize the lethal range of nuclear weapons against armored and well shielded targets.

What do we know about the Manhattan Project?

During the outbreak of the Second World War, the United States immersed itself in the efforts to design and develop nuclear weapons. The Manhattan Project was the name of this research and development program that began in 1940. The project was supported by Canada and the United Kingdom. In the initial years, the project was under the control of Major General Leslie Groves of the US Army Corps of Engineers, and the nuclear physicist Robert Oppenheimer. The first atomic bomb they developed was tested in the New Mexico desert on 16th July, 1945. The explosion was reported to be massive.

What led to the Manhattan Project?

In many ways, the Second World War altered the course of world history. One such feature was the revolutionary advancement in nuclear weapon manufacturing. Germany was already ahead of the United States in nuclear research at the start of World War II. The Americans were concerned that Germany would develop lethal nuclear weapons.

In this case, three scientists, Leo Szilard, Eugene Wigner, and Edward Teller, persuaded Albert Einstein to sign a letter they had written. This letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt demanded action on nuclear research. The letter stated unequivocally that uranium can be used as a new energy source in the near future. This letter resulted in

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