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Atomic bomb explosion

Atomic bomb explosion

T165/0093

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Credit

SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Atomic bomb. Coloured image of an atomic bomb explosion. Atomic or nuclear weapons work by releasing the energy within the nucleus of atoms. The simplest atomic bombs use plutonium or a specific type (isotope) of uranium. These are fissile materials, meaning that if they absorb a neutron they will split into smaller atoms, releasing energy and more neutrons. These neutrons can cause more fissions in what is called a 'chain reaction'. More sophisticated atomic bombs also contain certain isotopes of hydrogen. These hydrogen bombs (H-bombs) use the heat created by a chain reaction to fuse together the hydrogen atoms, releasing even more energy.

Release details

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