Bikini Atoll after nuclear testing

Bikini Atoll after nuclear testing

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Credit: US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Bikini Atoll after nuclear testing. Inhabitants of the Bikini Atoll, Marshall Islands, returning home ten years after nuclear testing ended. On 1st March 1954 the US detonated a hydrogen bomb (nuclear bomb) on the Bikini Atoll. The unexpectedly large explosion and subsequent public outcry provoked diplomatic negotiations that ended in the 1963 Nuclear Test Ban Treaty prohibiting surface tests. The explosion, expected to produce 4 to 6 megatons of explosive force, instead produced 15 megatons. The mushroom cloud reached 40 kilometres into the air - well into the stratosphere - and eventually spread to four continents. It was the largest above-ground test of a hydrogen bomb in US history.

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