Download Nuclear Weapons: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short by Joseph M. Siracusa PDF

By Joseph M. Siracusa

Regardless of now not having been utilized in anger on account that Hiroshima and Nagasaki, nuclear guns are nonetheless the most important risk that faces us within the twenty first century. certainly, for all of the attempt to minimize nuclear stockpiles to 0 and to maintain different countries (such as Iran) from constructing nuclear power, it appears the Bomb is right here to stick. during this gripping Very brief advent, Joseph M. Siracusa, an across the world revered authority on nuclear hands, offers a accomplished, obtainable, and from time to time chilling evaluate of the main lethal weapon ever invented. Siracusa explains the heritage of the palms race and the politics of the bomb, starting from the expertise of nuclear guns, to the innovative implications of the H-bomb and the politics of nuclear deterrence. the problems are set opposed to a backdrop of the altering overseas panorama, from the early days of improvement, throughout the chilly battle, to the present-day controversy over George W. Bush's nationwide Missile security, and the function of nuclear guns in an Age of Terror. offering an available and eye-opening backdrop to 1 of the main unsettling points of the fashionable international, this compact creation is needs to reading.

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Some even used the absence of detailed information to question 41 Race for the H-bomb Public surprise that the Soviets had perfected the bomb was remarkably muted. The development had come before nearly everyone expected it, but the capability was not in and of itself a cause of shock. Western forecasts for when the Soviets would cross the atomic threshold had varied widely, reflecting the dearth of hard evidence on the Soviet atomic programme. The first CIA estimate on the issue, dated 31 October 1946, predicted that the Soviets would produce a bomb ‘at some time between 1950 and 1953’.

Nuclear Weapons Berlin, Tokyo, and the bomb The Allied scientists had much to fear from Berlin. Late in 1938, Lise Meitner, Otto Hahn, and Fritz Strassman discovered the phenomenon of atomic fission. Meitner worked in Germany with physicists Hahn and Strassman until fleeing to Sweden to escape Nazi persecution. From her work in Germany, Meitner knew the nucleus of uranium-235 splits (fission) into two lighter nuclei when bombarded by a neutron, and that the sum of the particles derived from fission is not equal in mass to the original nucleus.

The announcement did not say when and where the explosion had taken place or how it had been detected, although it later came to light that the announcement came nearly a full month after the actual explosion – the test, of a plutonium type, had been conducted on 29 August – and had been detected after the fact by spy aircraft taking air samples. None of that was revealed at the time, though. Journalists frantically trying to flesh out the story found other government officials equally tight-lipped.

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