These Are The 12 Most Powerful Nuclear Bombs in History

No other force represents the absolute destructive power that humanity has unlocked in the way that nuclear weapons have.

And the weapon quickly became more powerful in the decades after that first test.

The device tested in 1945 had a power of 20 kilotons, which means it had the explosive power of 20,000 tons of TNT. Within 20 years, the US and USSR tested nuclear weapons larger than 10 megatons, or 10 million tons of TNT.

In terms of scale, this weapon was at least 500 times more powerful than the first atomic bomb. Los Alamos National Laboratory To determine the size of the largest nuclear explosions in history, we used Alex Wellerstein’s Nukemap, a tool for visualizing the terrifying real-world impact of a nuclear explosion. In the following maps, the first explosion ring is a fireball, then a radius radius. In the pink radius, almost all buildings have collapsed, and deaths are approaching 100 percent.

Soviet Tests #158 and #168Alex Wellerstein/Nukemap On August 25 and September 19, 1962, less than a month apart, the USSR conducted nuclear tests #158 and #168. Both tests were held over the Novaya Zemlya region of Russia, an archipelago in northern Russia near the Arctic Ocean.

No film or photographs of the tests have been released, but both tests involved the use of 10-megaton atomic bombs. These explosions would incinerate everything within 1.77 square miles of the epicenter, while causing third-degree burns to an area of ​​1,090 square kilometers.

Ivy Mike was the world’s first hydrogen bomb and had a power of 10.4 megatons, making it 700 times more powerful than the first atomic bomb.

Ivy Mike’s detonation was so powerful that it vaporized the island of Elugelab where it was detonated, leaving a 164-foot-deep crater in its place.

9. Castle Romeo US Department of Energy Romeo was the second US nuclear detonation in the Castle series of tests, which were carried out in 1954.

Castle Romeo was the third most powerful test of the series and had a yield of 11 megatons.

Romeo was the first device to be tested on a barge over open water instead of on a reef, as the US was quickly running out of islands on which to test nuclear weapons. The explosion would incinerate everything within a 1.91 square mile radius.8.

Soviet Test #123 Alex Wellerstein/Nukemap On October 23, 1961, the Soviets conducted nuclear test #123 over Novaya Zemlya.

Test #123 used a 12.5 megaton nuclear bomb. A bomb of this size would burn everything within a radius of 2.11 square miles, causing third-degree burns over an area of ​​1,309 square miles.

No footage or photos of this nuclear test have been released.

7. Castle Yankeebroubies/YouTubeCastle Yankee, the second most powerful test in the Castle series, was conducted on May 4, 1954.

The bomb was 13.5 megatons. Four days later, its precipitation reached Mexico City, about 7,100 miles away.

6. Castle Bravo US Department of Energy Castle Bravo, detonated on February 28, 1954, was the first of a series of Castle tests and the largest US nuclear explosion of all time.

Bravo was expected as an explosion of 6 megatons.

Instead, the bomb produced a 15 megaton fission explosion.

Its mushroom cloud reached 114,000 feet into the air. A misjudgment of the size of the test by the US military resulted in the radiation of approximately 665 Marshall Islanders and the death of a Japanese fisherman who was 80 miles away from the detonation site from radiation poisoning.

Soviet Tests #173, #174 and #147Alex Wellerstein/Nukemap From August 5 to September 27, 1962, the USSR conducted a series of nuclear tests over Novaya Zemlya.

Tests #173, #174 and #147 stand out as the fifth, fourth and third most powerful nuclear explosions in history. All three produced explosions of about 20 megatons, or about 1,000 times more powerful than the Trinity bomb.

A bomb of this power would ignite everything within a 3 square mile radius. No footage or photographs of these nuclear tests have been released.

2. Soviet test no. 219 Alex Wellerstein/Nukemap On December 24, 1962, the USSR conducted test no. 219 over Novaya Zemlya.

The bomb had a capacity of 24.2 megatons. A bomb of this power would incinerate everything within a radius of 3.58 square miles, causing third-degree burns over an area of ​​up to 2,250 square miles.

The Tsar Bombaserasvictorias/YouTube On October 30, 1961, the USSR detonated the largest nuclear weapon ever tested and created the largest man-made explosion in history. The blast, 3,000 times more powerful than the bomb used on Hiroshima, shattered windows 560 miles away, according to Slate. The flash of light from the explosion was visible up to 620 miles away.

The Tsar Bomba, as the test was eventually known, had a yield of between 50 and 58 megatons, twice that of the second largest nuclear explosion. A bomb of this size would create a fireball 6.4 square miles in size and could cause third-degree burns to people within 4,080 square miles of the bomb’s epicenter.

The First Atomic BombNukeMap The first atomic explosion was a fraction of the size of the Czar Bomb, but it was still an explosion of almost unimaginable size. According to NukeMap, the 20-kiloton weapon produced a fireball 260 meters across, making its total width the size of 5 football fields. . It would emit lethal radiation over an area 7 miles wide and cause third-degree burns over an area over 12 miles wide. If dropped over lower Manhattan, a bomb that size would kill over 150,000 people and produce fallout that would stretch as far as central Connecticut, according to NukeMap. The first atomic bomb was tiny by nuclear weapon standards.

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