H-Bomb
The H-bomb; courtesy of www.aerospaceweb.org
The H-bomb; courtesy of www.aerospaceweb.org

The H-bomb or Hydrogen bomb is a nuclear weapon obtains its energy usually from the fusion of deuterium and tritium atoms. Deuterium and tritium are hydrogen isotopes, having different number of neutrons from a hydrogen atom. In order to fuse the nuclei of the hydrogen isotopes, a fission bomb, such as the plutonium bomb used in Nagasaki, serves as a "trigger." When a fission explosion occurs, it produces heat that can reach up to 100 million degrees Celsius. Then, a thermonuclear reaction occurs when deuterium and tritium atoms are forced to fuse at very high temperatures, releasing great amounts of energy and powerful neutrons. This fission-fusion combination may release a thousand times more energy than the atomic bomb.


H-bomb explosion; courtesy of www.commondreams.org
H-bomb explosion; courtesy of www.commondreams.org
The United States successfully detonated its first Hydrogen bomb on November 1, 1952. The codename of this first nuclear testing is "Mike." Mathematician Stanislaw Ulam and physicist Edward Teller first met on October 1951 to decide on "Mike's" design. President Truman's decision to begin "Operation Ivy" ,which led to the creation of "Mike," was caused by the Soviet's atomic bomb detonation on 1949. Unlike the smaller, most powerful atomic bomb with a diameter of four feet, "Mike" was predicted to be twenty feet. It also weighed about seventy tons. Eniwetok Atoll in the Marshall Islands was chosen as the site for the explosion. Within ninety second of "Mike's" explosion, a ball of fire measuring 57,000 feet was created, eventually reaching 100 miles wide. Every living creature on the islands closest to the explosion was wiped out and many islands were left uninhabitable. One of the survey teams reported, "The body of a bird was seen, but no living animals and only the stumps of vegetation. Among the specimens collected were fish which seemed to have been burned. On each of these fish, the skin was missing from one side, as if, the field notes said at the time, the animal 'had been dropped in[to] a hot pan.' "

"Mike's" creation and detonation placed the United States ahead in the nuclear arms race and threatened the Soviet Union. Nine months after the United States' "Mike," the Soviets tested their first Hydrogen bomb on August 12, 1953 at the Semipalatinsk test site in Kazakhstan. A series of hydrogen bomb testings ensued from both the Soviet Union and the United States. In 1961, the largest hydrogen bomb, the Tsar-Bomb was detonated. Today many countries possess nuclear weapons. Countries like The United States, France, Russia, China, and the United Kingdom have signed the Nonproliferation Treaty in 1968 to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. Some countries known to have nuclear weapons, such as Israel, Pakistan, and India have yet to sign the treaty.


The H-Bomb "Mike" ; courtesy of youtube.com---------------------- Tsar's Explosion; courtesy of youtube.com





1) "American Experience . Race for the Superbomb . "Mike" Test | PBS." PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. Web. 26 May 2011. <http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/bomb/peopleevents/pandeAMEX63.html>.
I used this site for most of the information on my page about H-bomn "Mike." The Pbs website is reliable for specific information like the site where the bomb was tested. It also had a quote from a survey team who witnessed the explosion.

2)"Soviet Union Detonates Hydrogen Bomb (August 1953) - Biografie Willy Brandt."Bundeskanzler-Willy-Brandt-Stiftung. Web. 27 May 2011. <http://www.willy-brandt.org/bwbs_biografie/Soviet_Union_detonates_hydrogen_bomb_B1557.html>.
The site contained information on the Soviet's response to "Mike." I used the site to get the specific details on when and where the Soviet's tested its first hydrogen bomb.

3) Black, Richard. "BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | H-bomb Blast Remembered." BBC News - Home. Web. 27 May 2011. <http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2388027.stm>.

This website provided general information about the detonation of the first hydrogen bomb. It also provided information on the effects of "MIke" after the explosion.

4) Compton's. Vol. 17. Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2008. Print. Nk-O.
I used this encyclopedia to gain information on how a hydrogen bomb works. it explained that a hydrogen bomb uses both fission and fusion reactions to intensify its explosion.

5) "Nuclear Weapons: Who Has What at a Glance | Arms Control Association." Arms Control Association | The Authoritative Source on Arms Control since 1971. Web. 27 May 2011.
<http://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/Nuclearweaponswhohaswhat>.
This is the source I used to know about the Nonproliferation Treaty. The site showed which countries posses nuclear arsenals.

6) "Aerospaceweb.org | Ask Us - Broken Arrow Nuclear Weapon Accidents." Aerospaceweb.org | Reference for Aviation, Space, Design, and Engineering. Web. 27 May 2011. <http://www.aerospaceweb.org/question/weapons/q0268.shtml>.
The photo of the h-bomb on this page was taken from this website. I did not use it for information because it only told about accidents caused by nuclear weapons.

7) "US to Develop New Hydrogen Bomb." Home | Common Dreams. Web. 27 May 2011. <http://www.commondreams.org/headlines07/0302-02.htm>.
I copied an image of "Mike's" explosion from this site. The site also had information on a H-bomb developed in 2007. I, however, did not use any information from this site.

8) "YouTube - First Experimental H-Bomb Test ‏." YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. Web. 27 May 2011. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DkvfcAlujZ0>.
This youtube clip is from the film "Trinity and Beyond.' It shows the operations behind the detonation of "Mike."

9) YouTube - Russian Tsar Hydrogen Bomb Explosion ‏." YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. Web. 31 May 2011. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQ33O0qFeM0>.
This video features the explosion caused by the Tsar Bomb in 1961. The enormous fireball shows the powerful and destructive beauty of dangerous thermonuclear bombs.