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50 Facts About Nuclear Weapons You Didn’t Know


Nuclear armageddon- for years it haunted the
daily lives of millions of Americans and Russians, only to be all but forgotten at the end of
the Cold War. But with hostilities mounting once more between
the US and Russia, and the announcement of a possible pull out from a strategic arms
treaty by the US, the old specter of nuclear war is once more looming over a new generation. But how much do you really know about nuclear
weapons? Hello and welcome to another episode of The
Infographics Show- today we’re taking a look at 50 terrifying facts about nuclear weapons. 50. The largest nuclear weapon in the US stockpile
has a yield of 1.2 megatons- or 1,200,000 tons of TNT. 49. Compare that with the 15 kiloton- or 15,000
tons of TNT equivalent- of Little Boy, dropped on Hiroshima during World War II. 48. Most of the Uranium used in the Little Boy
and Fat Man nuclear bombs came from a single mine in what is today the Democratic Republic
of the Congo, shipped to the US by a Belgium mining firm. 47. Three different manufacturing plants were
used in developing the Fat Man and Little Boy nuclear weapons so that no one plant would
have the complete designs. 46. Because if exposed to water the uranium components
of the first nuclear bombs would release huge amounts of radioactive contamination, pilots
were strictly warned that in emergencies they must crash their planes on land and not the
sea. 45. In the Little Boy bomb, less than a kilogram
of the 64 kilograms of enriched uranium actually underwent nuclear fission, and of that mass
only .6 grams were transformed into kinetic and heat energy and radiation. 44. A timer on the first nuclear bombs ensured
that they would not detonate until at least 15 seconds after release, giving the aircraft
time to get to a relatively safe distance. 43. The chain reaction of nuclear material leading
to a nuclear detonation lasts less than 1 microsecond. 42. Disobeying orders, the weaponeer of the Enola
Gay was concerned that Little Boy could detonate accidentally if the Enola Gay crashed on take-off,
and thus removed the conventional explosives used to help the uranium achieve critical
mass from the weapon. He only replaced them once the aircraft was
safely up in the air and on her way to Hiroshima. 41. At 8:15 AM on the 6th of August, 1945 the
Enola Gay dropped the first nuclear weapon ever used in war on Hiroshima, killing 66,000
people, 20,000 of which were Imperial Japanese Army soldiers. 40. Claimed to have been used to avert a more
catastrophic invasion of Japan, it’s widely thought Japan would have surrendered to the
US soon anyways as it faced a massing Soviet fleet preparing to invade just across the
Sea of Japan. Senior Japanese officials all knew it would
be better to surrender to the US than the the Soviet Union. 39. Hiroshima was selected as a target for nuclear
bombing in April 1945, and spared the conventional bombing that Japan suffered throughout the
rest of the countryside. This was so that the effects of a nuclear
bomb on an undamaged city could be fully observed. 38. A second plane escorted the Enola Gay and
dropped a suite of instruments by parachute at the same time that the Little Boy atomic
bomb was dropped. These instruments relayed via radio data to
help engineers determine the total yield and effectiveness of the bomb. 37. The fiery blast from a nuclear bomb is the
result of local air being superheated by X-rays and sending out a pressure wave in all directions. 36. The fireball from the Hiroshima bombing was
1,200 feet (370 meters) in diameter and had a surface temperature of 10,830 degrees Fahrenheit
(6,000 celsius)- that’s hotter than the surface temperature of the sun! 35. Shadows from people near the epicenter of
the blast at Hiroshima were permanently burned onto the sides of buildings and the pavement. (use photos fromhttps://www.ranker.com/list/photos-of-shadows-burned-into-hiroshima/erin-wisti) 34. The Hiroshima bombing created a firestorm
2 miles (3.2 kilometers) in diameter- at Nagasaki a southwest wind pushed fires away from the
city and didn’t let them become so severe. 33. The true death count of victims at Nagasaki
and Hiroshima was impossible to calculate as many victims and all evidence they had
ever lived were immediately vaporized or cremated by the fires. 32. Surprisingly there was little radioactive
fallout from either the Nagasaki or Hiroshima blasts- fallout is typically created from
dust and ash from a bomb crater that is contaminated with radioactive products from the bomb, but
because both bombs were air bursts there was no bomb crater and little radioactive fallout. 31. When a nuclear bomb is air bursted over a
target, the vast majority of the radioactive products rise into the stratosphere and dissipate
into the global environment. 30. Despite there being little if any local fallout,
an intense burst of neutron and gamma radiation was emitted by the Little Boy and Hiroshima
bombs, with a lethal radius of about .8 miles (1.3 kilometers). 29. To date no radiation-related evidence of heritable
diseases has been observed amongst the survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. 28. The Smithsonian Institution displayed a complete
Little Boy nuclear bomb- minus the enriched uranium- until 1986, when the Department of
Energy took the weapon from the museum to remove its inner components so that it couldn’t
be stolen and detonated with fissile material inside it. Its outer casing was later returned for display. 27. The first detonation of a nuclear weapon in
history was at 5:29 am on July 16th, 1945 in New Mexico. 26. Producing the fissile isotopes uranium-235
and plutonium-239 for use in just a few bombs was so difficult that it took up 80% of the
entire Manhattan Project’s budget. 25. Without the technological breakthroughs of
the Manhattan Project, producing just one gram of enriched uranium would have taken
27,000 years. Maybe it would have been best if they had
failed. 24. The security detail at the Trinity test site
where the first atomic bomb was tested originally brought horses to help patrol the vast desert,
but the distances proved too great and instead resorted to jeeps. The horses were kept so the soldiers could
play polo when off-duty. 23. The base camp at the Trinity test site was
accidentally bombed twice because of its proximity to a bombing range and its secrecy, but with
no casualties. 22. The scientists at the Trinity test site worked
out of a ranch house that had been bought by the government when it acquired the land-
the master bedroom of the house was then turned into a clean room for assembly of the core
of the first nuclear bomb. In that bedroom at least is literally where
the boom-boom happened. 21. 160 men and their vehicles were on standby
outside the first atomic test in order to evacuate the surrounding region of civilians
should a disaster happen. The soldiers had enough food and supplies
to last the civilian population two days, and the governor of New Mexico was warned
that martial law may have to be declared- though he wasn’t told why. 20. The men at the test site were ordered to lie
on the ground with their backs turned to the bomb during the test, but scientist Edward
Teller ignored this and wore sunglasses under his welding goggles and brought suntan lotion
to share with a few others who also insisted on observing the test directly. 19. Scientist Enrico Fermi offered to take wagers
among the military and scientists on whether the test would ignite the atmosphere, and
if it did whether it would destroy only the state or incinerate the entire planet. This was a joke, but calculations indicated
there was a tiny chance that such a scenario could happen and for a long time it seriously
concerned all the scientists involved. 18. The Trinity test bomb melted desert sand around
it into a mildly radioactive light green glass which would be named trinitite. 17. Kenneth Bainbridge, one of the scientists
of the Manhattan Project, said just after the successful test, “Now we are all sons
of bitches.” Robert Oppenheimer, head of the project said
that he thought of a verse from the Hindu holy book, the Bhagavad Gita: Now I am become
Death, the destroyer of worlds. 16. A pilot flying a US Navy transport to the
west coast and just north of the test site thought for a moment that the sun was rising
in the south when the bomb detonated. He had no idea what he had just seen, and
when he reported the explosion over the radio he was simply warned not to fly south. 15. The government covered up the Trinity test
by telling civilians in the vicinity that what they had witnessed was just a depot full
of explosives and pyrotechnics accidentally exploding. 14. The results of the Trinity test were relayed
in code immediately to President Truman who was at the Potsdam Conference in Germany,
with the message reading: Operated on this morning. Diagnosis not yet complete but results seem
satisfactory and already exceed expectations. Local press release necessary as interest
extends great distance. 13. In August of 1945 the Kodak company discovered
spotting and fogging on their film caused by exposure to radioactive elements. The problem was tracked to the cardboard used
in containers, which came from a paper mill in Indiana and a hot spot of fallout that
had contaminated the river water the mill used. 12. In 1951 the US government gave Kodak and other
photographic companies maps and forecasts of potential contamination along with expected
fallout distributions so they could purchase uncontaminated materials for their boxes and
protect their stocks of film. 11. In 1961 a US Air Force B-52 broke up in midair
over Goldsboro, North Carolina and released two hydrogen bombs. Neither detonated upon hitting the ground,
but if they had each one would have had 260 times the destructive power of the bomb dropped
on Hiroshima. 10. Colorado, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota,
and Wyoming are home to the US’s entire ICBM fleet, which lie in missile fields that span
several square miles each. 9. In the 50s the US developed a tactical nuclear
weapon which weighed 51 pounds and could be fired from the back of a jeep. It was named the “Davy Crockett” and was
meant to be used against Soviet tank forces in Germany. 8. Just 8 kilograms of plutonium are needed for
a nuclear weapon- something many intelligence and security agencies around the world fear
is well within reach of major terror groups. 7. 11 nuclear bombs have been lost by the US
in accidents and never recovered- all of them in the ocean. 6. If under nuclear attack, the US President
would have just 12 minutes to order a counter-attack before incoming missiles destroyed the bulk
of US forces. 5. At any one time 12 Ohio-class ballistic missiles
are actively patrolling the world’s oceans, ready to unleash their nuclear arsenals in
the case of war. 4. The United States protects 31 nations with
its nuclear umbrella- all of NATO, Japan, South Korea, and Australia. A nuclear attack against any of these nations
will elicit an immediate response by the US. 3. The US maintains 200 B61 nuclear gravity bombs
deployed at forward bases in Europe for use by US and NATO air forces. 2. During the Cold War the US maintained up to
950 nuclear weapons in South Korea. 1. Since 1945 there have been 520 atmospheric
nuclear explosions, with 8 of them being underwater, for a total yield of 545 megatons, and 1,352
underground explosions for a total yield of 90 megatons. Many of us have been lucky enough to grow
up without the Cold War fears of a nuclear holocaust happening at any moment, and though
the international climate today is far better than it was back then, simmering hostilities
are threatening to boil over. To add to our problems, the advancement of
technology and the proliferation of enrichment technology around the world has made it easier
than ever for a terrorist group or criminal organization to simply build their own nuclear
weapon. Though full nuclear war may be avoided, the
risk of nuclear terrorism is at an all time high- prompting a famous reply from the US
intelligence community that “it’s a wonder it hasn’t happened yet.” Do you think the world will see another nuclear
attack- either in war or by terrorists? Let us know in the comments! And as always if you enjoyed this video don’t
forget to Like, Share, and Subscribe for more great content!

100 thoughts on “50 Facts About Nuclear Weapons You Didn’t Know

  1. "At any one time, 12 Ohio class ballistic missiles are actively patrolling the worlds oceans, ready to unleash their nuclear arsenals in the case of war"

  2. If you believe they can split an atom which has never been seen and you think that you can lie up a city from splitting an atom.

  3. A US specific infographic?
    What about the other side?
    What about the most powerful nuclear weapons?
    What about the typhoon class submarines??

  4. The nuclear bombing of Japan did two things, ended the war, and showed the entire world that the United States was now in charge of the entire world. A few ancillary results were the US was able to observe the effects of a nuclear explosion on a city and its inhabitants (which were studied for years after the war) and with the German nuclear research having been confiscated by the soviets, the United States didn’t have much of a choice in completing its nuclear program whether or not we needed to bomb the Japanese is debatable but there’s no denying due to these events the United States emerged from WWII as the dominant power on earth

  5. I will hope and pray for the whole world cause it looks like things are getting worse instead of better , it looks like we should vote Mr Donald out , I don't know what do you all think about that 😀

  6. Um, no, the u.s. got most of it's uranium from northern Canada, from uranium city, Yukon. Do your home work. Also the heavy water ( deturiam) came from cominco at trail, British Columbia.

  7. "It's wideily believed Japan would have surrendered without dropping the bomb." Not true. This is typical history revision. Japan would not have surrendered and they proved it by their actions and words. Only an idiot believes Japan would have given up. Therefore, this idea is widely believed by iddiots.

  8. Actually Colorado no longer has any missiles. They used to have Titan 1's but those went out of service quickly! Just Wyoming, North Dakota, and Montana now.

  9. Terrifying for Americans and russians..
    Uh yeah and the whole of Europe. We British are a nuclear power too. And the French… We would have been targeted and would have launched too

  10. So all the radiation goes up no wonder why people are getting cancer its because man kind is doomed to destroy it self

  11. not all of this is 100 precent accurate and vastly down plays the eniviromental and risk to humans and well all life and we have been on the brink of war for a while they seriously down play the risks out of mere wrecklessness so much what makes you think theyd tell us when theres a bigger threat like war

  12. I've been to the test site but did you know that was detonated the same time in the morning I was born but I was born about 62 years after

  13. It’s ironic that the country that we first bombed in ww2 is now under our protection by the same weapons that obliterated them in the past.

  14. The bombs dropped on Japan were actually ground bursts. If a stem is visible it is a ground burst. US Army definition. Ohio class ballistic missiles? How about Ohio class ballistic missile submarines.

  15. It is not true that they were going to surrender. To prove it USA had to dump second nuke. Saying that they didn't believe that this was real isn't a point as if u going to lose a whole city while you are going to surrender you would do it nevertheless belief is your city out or not

  16. Wow! These guys have A LOT of their facts wrong. Guess this is what happens when you produce a video with only 30 minutes worth of research.

  17. Countries make and keep nuclear bombs to use as a threat for protection, but it sounds crazy dangerous having a ton of these things around. Makes you wonder where they keep them? What if the nuclear bombs your country owns, are all stacked up together. One goes off, they all go off.

  18. YAWN! Get some obscure facts and I'll be impressed. This felt like three-quarters Manhattan Project – by the way, Little Boy was the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, I don't know why you said Little Boy and the Hiroshima bomb – and one quarter easily found stuff. Talk about the guy who figured out how a hydrogen bomb worked by asking questions as if he already knew the answers. Talk about FOGBANK. Talk about South Africa giving up its nuclear arsenal.

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