An overview of nuclear weapons

Reagan and the Strategic Defense An overview of nuclear weapons edit ] Main article: The existence of a Chinese non-strategic nuclear arsenal is uncertain. The fusion of deuterium and tritium is initiated by the extremely high temperatures and radiation that result from fission. Pakistan drew on the expertise of A.

W87 warheads yields kilotons.

Nuclear weapon

Several countries possess large stockpiles of civil plutonium for use in nuclear power reactors. These events led to much political fallout, as well as the Cuban Missile Crisis in More advanced systems, such as multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles MIRVscan launch multiple warheads at different targets from one missile, reducing the chance of a successful missile defense.

On June 14,China detonated its first hydrogen bomb. The 13 and 21 kiloton explosions over Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August burned both cities to the ground, killing overpeople instantly. Detailed overview of British forces is here.

Unfortunately, there are numerous potential sources of nuclear weapons and weapons materials worldwide and several types of shortcomings in current security and accounting measures, some of which we list below.

The implosion design can also be used with HEU, allowing a smaller device to achieve the same yield as a gun-type device. Missile Following the Iran-Iraq war, Iran committed itself to the development of one of the most sophisticated ballistic missile programs in the Middle East.

Some prominent neo-realist scholars, such as Kenneth Waltz and John Mearsheimerhave argued, along the lines of Gallois, that some forms of nuclear proliferation would decrease the likelihood of total warespecially in troubled regions of the world where there exists a single nuclear-weapon state.

Each of these components is known as a "stage", with the fission bomb as the "primary" and the fusion capsule as the "secondary".

Making a warhead small enough to fit onto a missile, though, can be difficult. In the Teller-Ulam designwhich accounts for all multi-megaton yield hydrogen bombs, this is accomplished by placing a fission bomb and fusion fuel tritiumdeuteriumor lithium deuteride in proximity within a special, radiation-reflecting container.

B83 gravity bomb seen here in its components has a "dial-a-yield" option for up to kilotons. As tensions increased, Kennedy eventually ordered U.

Nuclear arms race

In connection with the Strategic Defense Initiativeresearch into the nuclear pumped laser was conducted under the DOD program Project Excalibur but this did not result in a working weapon.

The United States and other countries are paying insufficient attention to this problem and, in some cases, pursuing policies that increase the risk of terrorists acquiring nuclear weapons. This technique can be used to construct thermonuclear weapons of arbitrarily large yield, in contrast to fission bombs, which are limited in their explosive force.

Weapons designed to threaten large populations or to deter attacks are known as strategic weapons. Many of these facilities are in academic or industrial settings with inadequate security—making them even more attractive targets for terrorists seeking nuclear weapons materials.

Israel has a plutonium-producing reactor at Dimona as well as a reprocessing plant, which the International Panel on Fissile Materials estimates can handle about 40 to tons of spent fuel each year.

U.S. Department of State

Nuclear weapons deliveryNuclear triadStrategic bomberIntercontinental ballistic missileand Submarine-launched ballistic missile The first nuclear weapons were gravity bombssuch as this " Fat Man " weapon dropped on NagasakiJapan. Whether India has detonated a "true" multi-staged thermonuclear weapon is controversial.Therefore, gun-type weapons will necessarily be heavier and bulkier than other types of nuclear weapons.

While this suggests that States seeking strategic nuclear weapons would look to more advanced designs, the simplicity of a gun-type device may be attractive to terrorists. Iran has been a non-nuclear weapon state party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) sinceand has an advanced nuclear program that was the subject of international negotiations and sanctions from until implementation of a comprehensive nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) began in The United States unilaterally withdrew from.

Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) The NPT is a landmark international treaty whose objective is to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and weapons technology, to promote cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and to further the goal of achieving nuclear disarmament and general and complete disarmament.

An overview of the threat of terroists obtaining nuclear weapons. Of all the terrorist threats facing the United States and the world, perhaps the gravest is the possibility of terrorists constructing or obtaining a nuclear weapon and detonating it in a city.

Series C: Acts and documents relating to Judgments and Advisory Opinions given by the Court / Pleadings, Oral Arguments and Documents Series D: Acts. All the nuclear weapon states continue to modernize their remaining nuclear forces and appear committed to retaining nuclear weapons for the indefinite future.

For an overview of global modernization programs, see this article.

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An overview of nuclear weapons
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