Unedited footage of the bombing of Nagasaki
: This silent film shows the final preparation and loading of the "Fat Man" bomb into "Bockscar," the plane which dropped the bomb on Nagasaki. It then shows the Nagasaki explosion from the window of an observation plane. This footage comes from Los Alamos National Laboratory. (SLYT)
NPR show us
and tells the story
of five men who agreed to stand directly below and observe a nuclear explosion.
On July 19, 1957, five Air Force officers and one photographer stood together on a patch of ground about 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas. They'd marked the spot 'Ground Zero. Population 5' on a hand-lettered sign hammered into the soft ground right next to them.
"A day after the 44th nuclear test explosion in the U.S. rent the still Nevada air, observers cautiously inspected department store mannequins
which were poised disheveled but still haughty on the sand in the homes of Yucca Flat."
Los Alamos National Laboratory has posted 10 minutes of newly discovered color home movie footage
of the scientists of the Manhattan Project, at work and at play, shot by physicist Hugh Bradner
. Restricted Data: The Nuclear Secrets Blog
notes some highlights and adds context.
Lookout Mountain Laboratories (Hollywood, CA) was originally built in 1941 as an air defense station. But after WWII, the US Air Force repurposed it into a secret film studio which operated for 22 years during the Cold War. The studio produced classified movies for all branches of the US Armed Forces, as well as the Atomic Energy Commission, until it was deactivated in 1969. During this time, cameramen, who referred to themselves as "atomic" cinematographers, were hired to shoot footage of atomic bomb tests in Nevada, Utah, New Mexico and the South Pacific.
Some of their films have been declassified and can be seen here. [more inside]
"With the renewed interest in nuclear weapons I have been struck by how few people there still are who have seen one explode." Jeremy Bernstein looks back
on the two above-ground tests he witnessed in 1957. "Smoky"
were part of Operation Plumbbob
, a series of 29 tests.
Dealing with Iran after Rumsfeld.
Seymour Hersh details the ongoing debate over how to deal with Iran's nuclear program. There's something here for everyone to worry about.
of the world looks like
of ballistic missiles
, especially reentry vehicle tests
. (Sound on last link.)
If the radiance of a thousand suns were to burst forth at once in the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One... I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.
---> part one and Part two
of Operation Crossroads, one of many atomic testing operations conducted during WWII, documented extensively on film and preserved in excellent condition here at the Archive. For further viewing: Operation Ivy
, the testing of the first hydrogen fusion bomb. Operation Cue
(1955 version), testing bomb damage done to housing and infrastructure. Special Delivery
, a look at the preparation and technology, especially planes, used for the testing. Duck and Cover
, a classic safety film from 1951 detailing the best schoolyard response to a nuclear attack. Caution! Interesting, disturbing, and at least an hour's worth of viewing!
Adolf Hitler had the atom bomb first but it was too primitive and ungainly for aerial deployment, says a new book by German historian Rainer Karlsch
. The book indicates that Nazi scientists carried out tests of what would now be called a dirty nuclear device
in the waning days of World War II. US historian Mark Walker
, an expert on the Third Reich's atomic weapons program, supports Karlsch's claims: "I consider the arguments very convincing". More inside.
"I had no idea we had so many weapons," he said. "What do we need them for?"
"The U.S. nuclear arsenal today includes 5,400 warheads loaded on intercontinental ballistic missiles at land and sea; an additional 1,750 nuclear bombs and cruise missiles ready to be launched from B-2 and B-52 bombers; a further 1,670 nuclear weapons classified as “tactical.” And just in case, an additional 10,000 or so nuclear warheads held in bunkers around the United States as a “hedge” against future surprises."