Trivial question.....

Discussion in 'General Military Arms & History Forum' started by Xracer, Feb 4, 2007.

  1. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

    Most of us know that the B-29 "Enola Gay" dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima....

    .....And "Bock's Car" dropped the second bomb on Nagasaki.

    What was the name of the B-29 that dropped the third atomic bomb, and where was it dropped?
  2. The third bomb to be actually "dropped" was over Bikini Atoll lagoon, June 6, 1946 by the B-29 aircraft known as "Dave's Dream." Technically, of course, this was the fourth bomb to be exploded if we count the Trinity test of July 16, 1945 as the first one, and those that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki as the second and third. It was the first in a series of tests at Bikini. :D

  3. Here's one right back at ya, X: :D

    What was the largest thermonuclear bomb ever tested (and the largest explosion ever created by humankind) and what were both its estimated yield when tested, and its estimated potential yield in theory?
  4. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

    I believe the Soviets detonated a 100 megaton hydrogen bomb at one point. I'm not sure if that was the actual yield.....or if he actual yield was lower and the potential yield was in the 100 megaton range.

    BTW...."Dave's Dream" and Bikini Atoll is correct. There were only a few "Silverplate" modified B-29s. "Bock's Car" was scheduled for the drop, but had an engine problem. "Dave's Dream" was the backup.

    Trinity doesn't count, since it was a "tower shot" and not a drop.

    And whod've thunk that a nuclear test would give it's name a skimpy bathing suit? :D :D :D
  5. You're pretty much right on the money, X. The largest nuclear bomb ever detonated was the Soviet so-called "Tsar Bomba" or Tsar Bomb, codenamed "Ivan" by its developers. It was exploded on October 30, 1961 on Novaya Zemlya, an island in the Arctic Sea. It was designed to yield 100 megatons of explosive force, but they (wisely!) scaled it down for the test. The bomb actually detonated yielded an estimated 50 to 55 megatons. It seems they figured out that there was no possible way to detonate a 100 megaton bomb and still allow enough time for the bomb truck to get clear of the blast. That was the bomb old Kruschev was bragging about at the UN when he threatened to "bury" us.

    OK, here's another one: What was the name of the test and the yield of the largest bomb the U.S. ever tested? :D
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2007
  6. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

    I believe it was the mid-1950's "Operation Castle" test at Bikini. The actual yield is unknown because the blast was considerably greater than expected, and the measuring instruments were destroyed, but was believed to be in the 20 to 20+ megaton range.

    Something in the deep dark recesses of my so-called mind, I seem to recall that it was the 2nd H-Bomb test, so would it might have been "Castle Baker" or "Castle Bravo" (I forget when they changed the phonetic alphabet).
  7. Right on the money, X. The name of the test was "Castle Bravo." The test led to the development, and eventual inventory, of the B41 gravity bomb with a maximum design yield of 25 megatons. The bomb they actually tested at Bikini yielded betweeb 15 and 20 megatons as you said. It pretty well vaporized one of the Bikini atolls. Despite what the government publically claims, we had (have?) MUCH bigger ones that were built during the Cold War for use against hardened command and control centers in the Soviet Union. According to a very reliable source I know personally (former Air Force officer, War College, the whole bit) we have a few that would yield somewhere in the 300 megaton range. Such a bomb would make a crater about 6 miles in diameter. Needless to say, those were never actually tested! What many people do not realize is that there is no theoretical limit to the size a thermonuclear weapon may be built.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2007
  8. Here's another one:

    What was the codename of the first thermonuclear (as opposed to fission) bomb test and where and when was it tested?
  9. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

    Hmmmmmm......well, it was before "Castle Bravo".....maybe '51 or '52, and I seem to recall that it was at Eniwetak, but whether it was an actual bomb, or a thermonuclear "device", I'm not sure. They were popping these things off like popcorn in that era.

    "Hello, my name is Orville Redinbacher....err...Edward Teller, and you should try some of my radioactive popcorn!" :D
  10. No kidding, X! In fact, it was the Castle Bravo test that really got them all thinking about an above-ground test ban treaty. The bomb ended up yielding twice the megatonage they had estimated and created some real problems with drifting fallout. Remember the strontium 90-in-mother's-milk scare that was so much in the news during the early '60s? We're both old enough farts to remember that one. :D Both we and the Soviets, quite sensibly, did finally enter into a treaty banning surface tests during Kennedy's presidency. China was still testing above ground as late as the 1980s.

    The first hydrogen (thermonuclear) bomb test ever conducted was code named "Mike." It was detonated on 1 November 1952, and as you said, on Enewetak Island in the Marshalls.
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