Atomic Bomb

Atomic Bomb Amazing facts 4u

45 Facts about Atomic Bomb | Amazing Facts 4U 

  1. In 1933, a Hungarian scientist Leo Szilard, first theorized that enormous amounts of energy could be released by an atomic chain reaction. In December 1938, German scientists discovered nuclear fission in uranium, the heaviest natural element .The nuclear fission produced a tremendous release of energy from a very small amount of uranium.
  2. Szilard, who had come to America to conduct chain reaction research, was in fact convinced that Hitler would attempt to build an “atomic” bomb. He persuaded Albert Einstein to write a letter to President Franklin Roosevelt in 1939 stating that it was conceivable that extremely powerful bombs of a new type might be constructed by Germans and urged the government to actively research into chain reactions.
  3. In June 1942, the army took over the task of organizing all chain reaction research into a full blown bomb program, code named the Manhattan Project. Gen. Leslie R. Groves, the man who had just built the Pentagon, was in charge of this top-secret project.
  4. Enrico Fermi, a Nobel Prize-winning emigrant from Italy, in fact presided over the first self-sustaining manmade nuclear chain reaction, which took place December 2, 1942, at the University of Chicago.
  5. The lead scientist on the Manhattan Project ,the $2 billion wartime effort by U.S. and British scientists and the U.S. Army to develop atomic bomb was J. Robert Oppenheimer , University of California physicist. He is often called the “father of the atomic bomb”.
  6. At its peak, amazing 160,000 people worked on the project in more than 25 sites across the United States. No one person can be completely credited with the invention of atomic weapons.
  7. The first nuclear bomb was in fact detonated on July 16, 1945, at Trinity site , New Mexico.
  8. The US in fact dropped about 49 practice bombs nicknamed “pumpkin bombs” that killed 400 and injured 1,200 before nuking Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
  9. Hiroshima was chosen because it was a large port city with an army base. It also had not been damaged much by earlier bombings. B-29 planes dropped atomic bombs. A-bomb on Hiroshima was dropped by Colonel Paul Tibbets. Name of the plane dropping it was Enola Gay named after his mother.
  10. About 12 cyanide pills were kept in the cockpit of the Enola Gay (plane carrying A-bomb), and pilots were instructed to take them if the mission was compromised during the bombing of Hiroshima
  11. Amazing fact is that only 3 of the 12 people on board the Enola Gay actually knew the real purpose of their mission to Hiroshima.
  12. In 1945, Japanese radar operators detected a small number of incoming US planes one of which carried the atomic bomb to be dropped on Hiroshima but amazingly decided not to intercept them not seeing it as a threat.
  13. The bomb called ‘Little Boy’ which was dropped over Hiroshima was over 10 feet long and weighed around 10,000 pounds. A small parachute was on the bomb in order to slow its drop and allow the plane time to fly away from the blast zone.
  14. ‘Little Boy’ dropped on Hiroshima exploded 580m (1,900ft) above the ground. Between 60,000 and 80,000 people were killed instantly. The fireball resulting from the bomb’s explosion was 50% hotter than the surface of the sun. Some people simply vanished in the explosion. Final death toll considering the long term effects of radiation was calculated at 135,000. The blast destroyed more than ten square kilometres (six square miles) of the city. The intense heat of the explosion created many fires, which consumed Hiroshima and lasted for three days, trapping and killing many of the survivors of the initial blast.
  15. Amazing fact is that the amount of matter converted to energy in the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima was just 700 milligrams.
  16. On the morning of 9 August, the Americans dropped a second, bigger atomic bomb. The original target was Kokura, but this was obscured by cloud so the bomb was dropped on nearby Nagasaki, an important port. The bomb over Nagasaki called ‘Fat Man’ blew up 500m above a tennis court. About 40,000 people were killed instantly and a third of the city was destroyed. The final death toll was calculated as at least 50,000.
  17. The first bomb ‘Little Boy’ dropped on Hiroshima was in fact made from Uranium. The bomb ‘Fat Man’ dropped on Nagasaki was made from Plutonium, which was even more powerful than Uranium.
  18. Amazingly it took Tokyo about 3 hours before they realized Hiroshima had been bombed.
  19. After the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, hundreds of people made their way towards Nagasaki. Of these, amazing 165 survived both the bombings and lived to tell the tale.
  20. The closest known survivor of the Hiroshima atomic bomb was in a basement only 170m (560 ft) from ground zero.
  21. The USA originally denied that atomic bombs caused any lingering radioactivity whatsoever, calling such claims as Japanese propaganda. Even New York Times ran an article with the headline “No radioactivity in Hiroshima ruin” citing only military sources and ignoring eyewitness accounts of radiation sickness.
  22. Six days after the bombing of Nagasaki, Emperor Hirohito and Japan surrendered to US forces. The Emperor announced this on the radio. It was the first time most Japanese had heard his voice.
  23. Amazing fact is that the most destructive bombing event of WWII was neither Hiroshima nor Nagasaki. It was the Operation Meetinghouse, the American firebombing of Tokyo.
  24. For decades, the mayor of Hiroshima, Tadatoshi Akiba wrote letters of protest each time a nuclear test was conducted, as a plea to end the use of nuclear weapons.
  25. The Gingko Biloba species of tree is 270 million years old. It rarely suffers from disease or insect attack and was amazingly one of the only living things to survive the Hiroshima nuclear bombing. The trees healed quickly and are still alive today.
  26. The oleander is the official flower of the city of Hiroshima because it was the first thing to bloom again after the explosion of the atomic bomb in 1945.
  27. The Flame of Peace in Hiroshima, Japan has burned since 1964 in honor of the victims and will be extinguished only when all nuclear weapons are removed from the world and the Earth is free from nuclear threat.
  28. An American made bank vault saved the contents from the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. After reconstruction of the bank, the new manager in fact sent a congratulatory letter to the vault manufacturer.
  29. After the Americans showed the power of the atomic bomb, other countries wanted to have that weapon.The Soviet Union tested their first atomic bomb in 1949, the British tested their first atomic bomb in 1952, France in 1960, China in 1964, India in 1974 and Pakistan in 1998.
  30. Total number of U.S. nuclear weapons tests, 1945-1992: 1,030 . First and last test: July 16, 1945 (“Trinity”) and September 23, 1992 (“Divider”).
  31. Total known land area occupied by U.S. nuclear weapons bases and facilities is an amazing 15,654 square miles in various states.
  32. Minimum number of classified pages estimated to be in the Department of Energy’s possession is estimated to be 280 million.
  33. Amazingly there was a nuclear explosion and no one knows who did it! It is known as the Vela Incident. On September 22, 1979 there was a double flash recorded near the Indian Ocean that is believed to be an atomic explosion. The satellite that recorded the flash had observed 41 other double flashes, which were all confirmed to be nuclear explosions. Nobody knows who did it as no one has taken credit.
  34. There are 92 known cases of nuclear bombs lost at sea.
  35. Since the advent of nuclear weapons, humans are now included in the list of endangered species. On our planet, we have about 25,000 nuclear warheads ready to be launched at any time enough to wipe out the entire human population of the planet many times over. A false warning can lead to nuclear war any second. More than 95% of nuclear weapons and atomic bombs are owned by the United States and Russia.
  36. Amazing fact is that in one crisis a single man saved the world from destruction. If  Stanislav Petrov, in 1983, had told his Russian superiors that his electronic monitors were signalling a massive nuclear attack from the US, there would have been a global nuclear war. He did not tell them and the signals turned out to be due to an electronic malfunction.
  37. Amazingly globally, we have more than 2 million kilograms of HEU (Highly enriched uranium). This is a large stock enough to make millions of atomic bombs. At present, only 15 to 25 kg of HEU has been used to make all the nuclear warheads worldwide.
  38. The cost of US nuclear weapons research, development, testing, deployment and maintenance has exceeded amazing $7.5 trillion.
  39. The U.S. and Russia have an agreement to reduce the spread of nuclear weapons between Russia and the U.S. to 1.700 to 2.200 at December 31, 2012, but the deal failed. Both countries are keeping as much nuclear warheads as they can.
  40. The U.S. has in fact  paid compensation of $ 759 million for the Marshall Islands for the damage costs for nuclear testing.
  41. The most powerful atomic bomb detonated an explosive force of 50 mega tonnes of TNT .That is 2,500 times greater than the bomb on Nagasaki. Called “Tsar Bomb”, the explosives were detonated by the USSR in a test conducted on 30.10.1961 in an Arctic Ocean archipelago in Northern Russia.
  42. The most powerful nuclear bomb produced and tested by the U.S. had provided a force of only 5 mega tonnes TNT. But due to a chain reaction which was not foreseen in the project, the explosion was 3 times more powerful than anticipated.
  43. Amazing fact is that one 5 megaton nuclear bomb has as much explosive power as all the explosives used in the second world war.
  44. The average nuclear weapon in the US arsenal is approximately eight times more powerful than the nuclear bomb that destroyed Hiroshima.
  45. Nuclear arsenals have to be totally eliminated to ensure survival of human race. If we wait till the first nuclear weapons are launched no emergency action will help the millions of dead and dying. Our power obsessed politicians will have done their irretrievable worst.

By Amazing Facts 4U Team

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