Interesting Facts About Nuclear Weapons: Very Dangerous!

There are over 27,000 nuclear weapons in the world. Thousands are deployed on land, at sea and in the air, posing the constant threat of nuclear war and radioactive contamination. Nuclear weapons are far more destructive than conventional bombs. Their explosions kill indiscriminately on a massive scale, and their radioactive fallout can continue causing fatal illness for years to come.
Here are 15 interesting facts about nuclear weapons:
1. A program exists among the NATO countries known as ‘Nuclear Sharing,’ where member countries without nuclear capabilities host nuclear devices from other countries. Currently, Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and Turkey are hosting weapons belonging to the United States. But here’s the catch: the bombs cannot detonate without a special authorized security code issued by the US Armed Forces.
2. The famous formula E=MC2 defines the amount of power that would be released if the matter is converted entirely into energy. Based on this formula, it would only take 0.7 grams of matter to produce a yield equal to the bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
3. One of the most prolific of the US Nuclear Test sites is in the largely desert state of Nevada, where more than 900 tests, both above and below ground, were conducted between 1951 and 1992.
4. In 1957, the United Nations created the International Atomic Energy Agency, an organization to promote peace and safety regulation standards with nuclear technologies.
5. In addition to being terrible engines of destruction, sometimes something can be created by a nuclear bomb. Kazakhstan’s Lake Chagan began as a crater resulting from a nuclear test. In recent years, the residual radiation has dropped to the point that the lake is now safe for residents to swim in.
6. The Biggest Bomb on Earth: In 1961, a hydrogen bomb was detonated by the then Soviet Union that still holds the record as the most powerful explosive device ever used. Called Tsar Bomba (‘The Tzar of Bombs’), it produced a shock wave so strong that it was still registering on seismic equipment on its third trip around the world.
7. A survey of the chemical content of baby teeth in 1961 by Dr. Louise Reiss revealed that the teeth and bones of babies were becoming contaminated by radioactive materials introduced into the environment by nuclear testing. The disturbing nature of these findings contributed to many of the test ban treaties which limited the number, nature, and magnitude of nuclear tests.
8. Tsar Bomba, the most powerful nuclear weapon ever detonated, was so powerful that it created seismic shocks that were measurable even on their third passage around the Earth.
9. The US Government still pays for medical compensation for those that returned to the Bikini Atoll after their atomic weapons testing there. The USA allowed the native population to relocate there in 1970.
10. The US Air Force developed a top-secret plan to detonate a nuclear bomb on the moon as a display of military might at the height of the Cold War. The mathematical modeling for the explosion was done by Carl Sagan.
11. In over 2000+ nuclear test detonations, only one has an unknown nationality. No nation has taken credit for the detonation of a three kiloton bomb in the Indian Ocean in 1979. It is called the Vela Incident.
12. The budget for nuclear weapons in the USA is not included in the Department of Defense spending. It falls under the Department of Energy.
13. In 1961, the US Air Force accidentally dropped two nuclear bombs on North Carolina, each with more than 250 times the destructive power of the Hiroshima bomb, but neither of them exploded. They discovered one of the nuclear weapons had landed in a field with its deployed parachute tangled in the branches of a tree. The second bomb had anything but a soft landing. It became entombed after striking the ground at nearly 700 miles per hour. It was one low voltage switch away from actually detonating.
14. An atomic bomb cameraman ripped his safety goggles a split second before the bomb exploded. He immediately covered his eyes with his hand and saw his hand’s bones through his closed eyelids just like in an X-ray.
15. The first atomic bomb detonation at the Trinity site in New Mexico caused the sand in the surrounding area to turn to glass from the heat, creating a new mineral called “Trinitite,” named after the site of the explosion.

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