1945-1991: Cold War world Wiki

The "Baker" explosion, part of Operation Crossroads, a nuclear weapon test by the United States military at Bikini Atoll, Micronesia, on 25 July 1946.

The treaty[]

The "Treaty banning nuclear weapon tests in the atmosphere, in outer space and under water" is often abbreviated as "the Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT)", "Limited Test Ban Treaty (LTBT)", or "Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (NTBT)". Nuclear weapon tests in the atmosphere (like the Starfish Prime high-altitude nuclear test on July 9, 1962), in outer space and under water (like the Operation Crossroads) were banned on environmental grounds. Any blasts that caused radioactive debris to leave territorial limits of the state exploded it were also outlawed. The UK, USA and USSR all singed up to it, since the fear of radiation sickness was common to all parties that had nuclear weapons to make, test and\or store.

Why under water[]


HD tsunami bomb underwater nuclear explosion 1958 operation hardtack-0

A 'Tsunami bomb' underwater nuclear explosion 1958 operation hardtack.

The Baker Nuclear Test at Bikini Atoll on July 1946 was a shallow underwater explosion and part of Operation Crossroads. A 20-21 kiloton warhead was detonated in a lagoon which was approximately 200 ft (61 m) deep. The local islanders were moved to near by Rongerik Atoll, then Atoll Kwajalein Atoll, Jaluit Atoll, Ujelang Atoll and finally Kili Island. They were given generous heath cover in case of accidental bomb test injuries, but both island's fisheries were ruined from the early 1950's to the late 1970's. All this radiation swilling around the high sea caused much concern at the time.

Most weponolagists, scientists and politicians on both sides found this level of collateral damage frightening.

Why in outer space[]

It was seen as about the only place beyond the polar regions and the innermost Amazonian Basin that humans had not ruined or perverted and was to remain so on moral grounds.

Why in the atmosphere[]

The debris fireball and aurora created by the Starfish Prime test, as seen from a KC-135 aircraft at 3 minutes on July 9, 1962. Yield 1,450 kilotons.

The original Telstar had a roughly spherical shape.

Several satellites inadvertently damaged or destroyed by the in the Starfish Prime high-altitude nuclear test of July 9, 1962, and subsequent long turn temporary radiation belt. 7 satellites failed over the months following the test as radiation damaged their solar arrays or electronics, including the first commercial relay communication satellite, Telstar. just under 1/3 of all low orbit satellites were inoperative after the test created a temporary artificial radiation belt. Detectors on Telstar, TRAAC, the Injun 1 and Ariel 1 were used to measure distribution of the radiation produced by the tests, of which only the Injun 1. Ariel 1, TRAAC, and Transit 4B were destroyed, while Kosmos 5, Injun I and Telstar 1 suffered minor damage by radiation on solar cells and alike. Telstar finally shorted out after 3 months.

The then only theoretical Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) hit Honolulu and New Zealand (approximately 1,300 kilometers away), fusing 300 street lights on Oahu (Hawaii), setting off about 100 burglar alarms and causing the failure of a microwave repeating station on Kauai, which cut off the island's sturdy local telephone system from the other Hawaiian islands.

Most weponolagists, scientists and politicians on both sides found this level of collateral damage frightening.

Tritium levels[]

The high levels of tritium oxide introduced into upper layers of the oceans before the Partial Test Ban Treaty have been used in the years since then to measure the rate of mixing of the upper layers of the oceans with their lower levels.

Project Vela[]

Vela was the name of a group of satellites developed as the Vela Hotel element of Project Vela by the United States to monitor compliance with the 1963 Partial Test Ban Treaty by the Soviet Union.

Also see[]

  1. Atomic War
  2. Bikini Atoll
  3. Project Vela
  4. Nuclear fallout
  5. Atomic\nuclear war
  6. Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
  7. A nuclear\atomic holocaust or nuclear apocalypse
  8. GAM-87 Skybolt
  9. Rolls-Royce RZ2
  10. RAF Upavon
  11. RAF Spadeadam
  12. SM-65 Atlas
  13. Atomic Weapons Research Establishment
  14. medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM)
  15. Europa satellite launch vehicle
  16. Woomera Test Range
  17. Kourou Launch Site
  18. C-3 Poseidon missile
  19. Project Nobska
  20. SALT II Treaty
  21. medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM)
  22. Europa satellite launch vehicle.
  23. Woomera Test Range
  24. Kourou Launch Site
  25. ELDO project
  26. Atomic Weapons Research Establishment
  27. Atomic\nuclear war
  28. A nuclear\atomic holocaust or nuclear apocalypse
  29. 1962 Nassau Agreement
  30. Rolls-Royce RZ2
  31. medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM)
  32. Europa satellite launch vehicle
  33. Woomera Test Range
  34. Kourou Launch Site
  35. ELDO project
  36. Atomic Weapons Research Establishment
  37. Blue Streak
  38. Skybolt missile
  39. 1962 Nassau Agreement
  40. Flying Scotsman
  41. Provisional IRA