Trinity (nuclear test)

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Trinity was the code name of the first nuclear weapons test of an atomic bomb. This test was conducted by the United States Army on July 16, 1945,[4][5][6][7] at a location about 35 miles (56 km) southeast of Socorro, New Mexico, at the White Sands Proving Ground, now the White Sands Missile Range.[8][9] Trinity was a test of an implosion design plutonium device. The weapon's informal nickname was "The Gadget".[10] Using the same conceptual design, the Fat Man device was detonated over Nagasaki, Japan, on August 9, 1945. The Trinity detonation produced an explosive power equivalent to the explosion of about 20 kilotons of TNT. This date is usually considered to be the beginning of the Atomic Age.

Contents

History

The creation of atomic weapons arose out of political and scientific developments of the late 1930s. The rise of Fascist governments in Europe, new discoveries about the nature of atoms and the fear that Nazi Germany was working on developing atomic bombs, converged in the plans of the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada to develop powerful weapons using nuclear fission as their primary source of energy. The "Manhattan Project", as the American nuclear physics effort was called, culminated in the test of a nuclear weapon at what is now called the "Trinity Site" on July 16, 1945, and the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki just a few weeks later.

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