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Sun Oct 6, 2019, 01:00 PM



Sputnik 1 (Простейший Спутник-1) was the first artificial Earth satellite. The Soviet Union launched it into an elliptical low Earth orbit on 4 October 1957. It orbited for three weeks before its batteries died, then continued to orbit silently for two more months before falling back into the atmosphere. It was a 58 cm (23 in) diameter polished metal sphere, with four external radio antennas to broadcast radio pulses. Its radio signal was easily detectable, even by radio amateurs.

Essentially, this launch began the Space Race between the USA and USSR, which is a much better way for nations to compete than building nuclear weapons.

Trinity was the code name of the first detonation of a nuclear device. The code name "Trinity" was assigned by J. Robert Oppenheimer, the director of the Los Alamos Laboratory, the code-name was inspired by the poetry of John Donne. The test was of an implosion-design plutonium device, informally nicknamed The Gadget and employed same design as the Fat Man bomb later detonated over Nagasaki, Japan, on August 9, 1945.

The first nuclear test was conducted by the United States Army at 5:29 a.m. on July 16, 1945, as part of the Manhattan Project. The test was conducted in the Jornada del Muerto desert about 35 miles (56 km) southeast of Socorro, New Mexico, on what was then the USAAF Alamogordo Bombing and Gunnery Range, now part of White Sands Missile Range.The United States was also the first nation to detonate two nuclear weapons over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9, 1945, respectively, which ended WWII.

In the immediate post-World War II era, the US and USSR both started rocket research programs based on the German wartime designs, especially the V-2. This competition in development of nuclear weapons became known as the Cold War. In the US, each branch of the military started its own programs, leading to considerable duplication of effort. In the USSR, rocket research was centrally organized, although several teams worked on different designs. Early designs from both countries were short-range missiles, like the V-2, but improvements quickly followed.

Operation Hurricane was the first test of a British atomic device. This plutonium implosion device was detonated on 3 October 1952 in the lagoon in the Monte Bello Islands in Western Australia. With the success of Operation Hurricane, Britain became the third nuclear power after the United States and the Soviet Union.

During the Second World War, Britain commenced a nuclear weapons project, known as Tube Alloys. But the 1943 Quebec Agreement merged it with the American Manhattan Project. Several key British scientists worked on the Manhattan Project,

In the USSR, early development was focused on missiles able to attack European targets. This changed in 1953 when Sergei Korolyov was directed to start development of a true Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) able to deliver newly developed hydrogen bombs. Given steady funding throughout, the R-7 developed with some speed. The first launch took place on 15 May 1957 and led to an unintended crash 400 km (250 mi) from the site. The first successful test followed on 21 August 1957; the R-7 flew over 6,000 km (3,700 mi) and became the world's first ICBM. The first strategic-missile unit became operational on 9 February 1959 at Plesetsk in north-west Russia.

Gerboise Bleue (French: [ʒɛʁbwaz bl], blue jerboa was the name of the first French nuclear test. It was an atomic bomb detonated near Reggane, in the middle of the Algerian Sahara desert on 13 February 1960, during the Algerian War, from 1954 until 1962. General Pierre Marie Gallois was instrumental in the endeavor, and earned the nickname of pre de la bombe (father of the A-bomb.)

Gerboise is the French word for jerboa, a desert rodent found in the Sahara. The following three bombs detonated near Reggane were named respectively "white" (Gerboise Blanche), "red" (Gerboise Rouge), and "green" (Gerboise Verte).

The SM-65 Atlas was the first operational intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) developed by the United States and the first member of the Atlas rocket family. It was built for the U.S. Air Force by the Convair Division of General Dynamics, at an assembly plant located in Kearny Mesa (north of San Diego). Atlas became operational as an ICBM in October 1959 and was quickly obsoleted by new development, being retired as a missile by 1965.

Project 596, originally named by the US intelligence agencies Chic-1, is the codename of the first nuclear weapons test conducted by the People's Republic of China. It was detonated on October 16, 1964, at the Lop Nur test site. It was a uranium-235 implosion fission device made from weapons-grade uranium (U-235) enriched in a gaseous diffusion plant in Lanzhou. The bomb had a yield of 22 kilotons, comparable to the Soviet Union's first nuclear bomb RDS-1 in 1949. With the test, China became the fifth nuclear power. This was the first of 45 total nuclear tests China has conducted to date, all of which occurred at the Lop Nur test site.

At this time, each nation - mentioned above - has developed various, diverse nuclear weapons platforms. And all of these countries have so many nuclear weapons that a small fraction of their arsenal could destroy the Earth several times over. Many individuals, groups and less-developed nations would pay a fortune for just one of these nuclear weapons. And then, they would use it in the most irresponsible and dangerous method imaginable. The USA, China, Russia, England and France spend unbelievable amounts of money to store and guard these weapons, along with the additional expense of protecting the secrets on ways to build them.

Women protesting, during the Cuban Missile Crisis:

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