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Subject: What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?
GOP    9/12/2004 4:41:16 PM
If America hit's China in retaliation for a invasion of Taiwan (not likely), let's say in Beijing, what happens to China and the rest of the world? I don't know the different sizes of Nuke's, but let say a very powerful ICBM.
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displacedjim    RE:swapping full blown nukes for neutron bombs   10/28/2004 5:33:47 PM
Well, I really wonder how much more humane using enhanced radiation weapons would be. It seems to me all that does is slightly reduce the blast damage radius while slightly increasing the radiation damage radius, thus roughly speaking killing fewer people outright, but killing more people by radiation sickness. Sounds like you'd increase the overall amount of suffering, if anything. Furthermore, I would hope we stopped targeting population centers many years ago when we developed sufficiently accurate weapons to achieve hardened target kills and could target enemy strategic military targets, which would in general make increased blast effect more advantageous than increased radiation effect. Displacedjim
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french stratege    GOP:What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?   10/28/2004 6:01:21 PM
A nuke weapon as Hiroshima of 15 kt destroyed 30 sq km (convert in sq miles).The surface destroy is about exponent 2/3 of power.If you have a 15 MT bomb (1000 * Hiroshima) the surface destroyed is 3000 sq km.Today biggest bombs are about 3MT. But even such a bomb would do les radioactive falls than Tchernobyl disaster. According to Rand Corp study , a nuclear war which would kill 20 million of US people and involved dozen of nukes,would nevertheless let US to recover in less than 5 years to come back at the same standard of life.
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french stratege    RE:GOP:What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?   10/28/2004 6:05:04 PM
Personaly I like the bomb! It allows a smaller coutry to have a cheap and efficient deterrent mean. I' m sad each time France lost a nuke in its arsenal.sniff..
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displacedjim    RE:GOP:What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?   10/29/2004 9:27:03 AM
"A nuke weapon as Hiroshima of 15 kt destroyed 30 sq km (convert in sq miles)." -- FS ---- I seriously have to question that statement. I've read that the large majority of the damage done at Hiroshima was the result of the fire started by the blast, which then raged out of control and spread across much of the city. The fire is also what caused most of the casualties. It's true that there are a few warheads still in use that are actually in the megaton range, for example the Chinese ICBM warheads. All American ICBM warheads are around 340 kilotons, while SLBM warheads are something like around 150 kilotons. Most Russian warheads are in a similar range. Displacedjim
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Yimmy    RE:GOP:What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?   10/29/2004 12:00:55 PM
I doubt it was the blast that started all the fires, it was more likely the heat..
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displacedjim    RE:GOP:What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?   10/29/2004 3:52:12 PM
Yes, I used blast in a generic way to refer to the various effects that result from nuclear fission that I find are typically envisioned as the cause of all the Hiroshima casualties, as opposed to the damage caused in fires initially lit by the explosion effects but which then continued for many hours (days?) afterward. Perhaps GOP and anyone else interested should read this. I found it in about 30 seconds doing a websearch. Displacedjim ----------------- Effects of Nuclear Weapons Nuclear Explosions produce both immediate and delayed destructive effects. Blast, thermal radiation, prompt ionizing radiation are produced and cause significant destruction within seconds or minutes of a nuclear detonation. The delayed effects, such as radioactive fallout and other possible environmental effects, inflict damage over an extended period ranging from hours to years. Destruction of a military target by a nuclear fission weapon is comprehended mainly by the effects of a powerful blast wave in air but the more distant military consequences of a nuclear explosion can be significantly augmented by the thermal (heat) radiations emitted by the fireball that emerges from the isothermal sphere. Furthermore, accurate anticipation of the thermal characteristics and physical behavior of an isothermal sphere as it endures and rises above a nuclear explosion can be useful as a basis to predict the military and environmental effects of radioactive fallout since most of the dangerous fission byproducts of an atomic bomb detonation are concentrated in the isothermal sphere. The effects of nuclear weapons were carefully observed, both after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and after many test explosions in the 1950s and early 1960s. The basic effects of nuclear explosion are: Blast Effects Thermal Effects Radiation Electromagnetic pulse (EMP) Fallout Climatic Effects Blast Effects As is the case with explosions caused by conventional weapons, most of the damage to buildings and other structures from a nuclear explosion results, directly or indirectly, from the effects of blast. The very rapid expansion of the bomb materials produces a high-pressure pulse, or shock wave, that moves rapidly outward from the exploding bomb. In air, this shock wave is called a blast wave because it is equivalent to and is accompanied by powerful winds of much greater than hurricane force. Damage is caused both by the high excess (or overpressure) of air at the front of the blast wave and by the extremely strong winds that persist after the wave front has passed. In general, large buildings are destroyed by the change in air pressure, while people and objects such as trees and utility poles are destroyed by the wind. The degree of blast damage suffered on the ground depends on: TNT equivalent of the explosion; the altitude at which the bomb is exploded (the height of burst); and the distance of the structure from ground zero (the point directly under the bomb). Assuming a height of burst that will maximize the damage area, a 10-kiloton bomb will cause severe damage to wood-frame houses, such as are common in the United States, to a distance of more than 1.6 km (more than 1 mi) from ground zero and moderate damage as far as 2.4 km (1.5 mi). (A severely damaged house probably would be beyond repair.) The damage radius increases with the power of the bomb, approximately in proportion to its cube root. If exploded at the optimum height, therefore, a 10-megaton weapon, which is 1,000 times as powerful as a 10-kiloton weapon, will increase the distance tenfold, that is, out to 17.7 km (11 mi) for severe damage and 24 km (15 mi) for moderate damage of a frame house. When a nuclear weapon is detonated on or near Earth's surface, the blast digs out a large crater. Some of the material that used in be in the crater is deposited on the rim of the crater; the rest is carried up into the air and returns to Earth as radioactive fallout. An explosion that is farther above the Earth's surface than the radius of the fireball does not dig a crater and produces negligible immediate fallout. For the most part, a nuclear blast kills people by indirect means rather than by direct pressure. Thermal Effects Approximately 35 percent of the energy from a nuclear explosion is an intense burst of thermal radiation, i.e., heat. The effects are similar to the effect of a two-second flash from an enormous sunlamp. The very high temperatures attained in a nuclear explosion result in the formation of an extremely hot incandescent mass of gas called a fireball. For a 10-kiloton explosion in the air, the fireball will attain a maximum diameter of about 300 m (about 1,000 ft); for a 10-megaton weapon the fireball may be 4.8 km (3 mi) across. A flash of thermal (or heat) radiation is emitted from the fireball and spreads out over a large area, but with steadily decreasi
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bsl    RE:GOP:What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?   10/29/2004 8:14:48 PM
1)The size of weapons mentioned is arbitrary. Fusion bombs can be built in vastly larger sizes. Designs in the 50 to 100 megaton range were on the drawing board in both the US and USSR in the '50s. Some weapons in the lower end of this range were built. Large weapons are simply not necessary. One megaton bombs are more than sufficient to destroy cities. If necessary, it's easy to use several smaller bombs, in sequence (allowing a few minutes between detonations). 2)In the present world, as far as the advanced countries are concerend, the real issues for people not within a few miles of a detonation are probably more psychological than real. People become hysterical at the thought of exposures which were not uncommon in earlier generations. The amount of fallout the above=ground tests of the US, USSR, UK, and France put into the air would, if measured, today, and reported in the media in Europe, cause riots. It's no more dangerous, today, than it was then, but the public attitude is different. Marie Curie died of radiation poisoning. If she was alive, today, her research would be banned as too dangerous. People accepted rates of death in civilian aviation in the 1920s and 1930s which would lead to airlines being closed by government action, today. 3)The real issues regarding the use of a nuclear weapon, today, are, for all but those in close proximity, psychological rather than medical. The real issues involve what would happen, next, and how the world would change. And, it would change, in major ways. For an example of the degree of change possible, compare the way the people of the advanced world thought in 1930 to the way they thought in 1940, and, again, in 1950. Whatever actually happened, in detail, the world would change, as far as the people reading this board are concerned.
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mr.twister    RE:What happens to the world if 1 nuke is used?   11/22/2004 9:46:23 PM
Here is the best description that I've found on the internet about the effects of a nuclear blast. This scenerio is what one SS-17 spanker would do to the Brownsville, Texas area. It is very detailed and might be a little much for some people (technically anyway) but being an engineer, the more detailed, the better.
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GBU28    Displacedjim is Right... facts are way off   12/24/2004 5:29:58 AM
Copyright Anthony H. Cordesman, all rights reserved. No portion may be execerpted or reproduced without the written permission of the author and the payment of an agreed fee. Figure 10.6 The Comparative Effects of Biological, Chemical, and Nuclear Weapons Delivered Against a Typical Urban Target in the Middle East Using missile warheads: Assumes one Scud sized warhead with a maximum payload of 1,000 kilograms. The study assumes that the biological agent would not make maximum use of this payload capability because this is inefficient. It is unclear this is realistic. Area Covered Deaths Assuming in Square Kilometers 3,000-10,000 people Per Square Kilometer Chemical: 300 kilograms of Sarin nerve gas with a density of 70 milligrams per cubic meter 0.22 60-200 Biological 30 kilograms of Anthrax spores with a density of 0.1 milligram per cubic meter 10 30,000-100,000 Nuclear: One 12.5 kiloton nuclear device achieving 5 pounds per cubic inch of over-pressure 7.8 23,000-80,000 One 1 megaton hydrogen bomb 190 570,000-1,900,000 Using one aircraft delivering 1,000 kilograms of Sarin nerve gas or 100 kilograms of anthrax spores: Assumes the aircraft flies in a straight line over the target at optimal altitude and dispensing the agent as an aerosol. The study assumes that the biological agent would not make maximum use of this payload capability because this is inefficient. It is unclear this is realistic. Area Covered Deaths Assuming in Square Kilometers 3,000-10,000 people Per Square Kilometer Clear sunny day, light breeze Sarin Nerve Gas 0.74 300-700 Anthrax Spores 46 130,000-460,000 Overcast day or night, moderate wind Sarin Nerve Gas 0.8 400-800 Anthrax Spores 140 420,000-1,400,000 Clear calm night Sarin Nerve Gas 7.8 3,000-8,000 Anthrax Spores 300 1,000,000-3,000,000 Source: Adapted by the Anthony H. Cordesman from Office of Technology Assessment, Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction: Assessing the Risks, US Congress OTA-ISC-559, Washington, August, 1993, pp. 53-54.
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GBU28    RE:Displacedjim is Right... facts are way off   12/24/2004 5:32:03 AM
Well.... my last post didn't display the graph properly.... but click on the link... and it will give you some good info on blast damage vs. the destructiveness of other type of WMD.
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