We all have heard stories of how nuclear blasts during 1945 decimated Japan and caused mass destruction. But, do you know, atomic explosions that took place in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan back then are nothing as compared to the modern day hydrogen bombs. Countries like Russia, and the USA have thousands of nuclear bombs in their arsenals. Enough to destroy the planet Earth completely if detonated together. In today’s post, we are going to share information about the top 10 most powerful nuclear Explosions that ever took place.
You will be surprised to know that nearly 2000 nuclear tests have been performed ever since August 1945 when the US dropped atomic bombs on Japan. Out of these tests, some nuclear explosions were powerful enough to cause earthquakes. Go through this article to know the top 10 most powerful nuclear bombs in History.
Top 10 Nuclear Bomb in the World
Do you know about the top 10 nuclear bomb in the world, here is the list:
MK – 14 Nuclear Bomb
Mark 14 was a strategic thermonuclear Bomb developed by the United States of America. It was the first solid-fuel staged hydrogen bomb. There are many names by which this bomb is listed such as TX-14 or EC-14. Here, EC means Emergency Capability. It was first tested in the month of April 1954.
95% of the fusion fuel used by this bomb was enriched Lithium isotopes 6 lithium deuteride. Taking about the size, the bomb had a length of 222 inches and a diameter of 61.4 inches. Its weight was around 28,950 lbs to 31000 lbs. Plus, it also used a parachute of length 64 feet. The bomb was so powerful that it yield energy of 6.9 MT.
MK – 16 Nuclear Bomb (Mark 16)
Based on the design of Ivy Mike, Mark 16 nuclear bomb was manufactured in January 1954. However, the bomb was soon retired when an alternative solid-fueled thermonuclear weapons had been tested successfully. It was the first bomb that used a cryogenic liquid deuterium fusion fuel. These bombs were not mass-produced because they required cryogenic temperature materials or a cooling system.
Talking about the power of this power, Mk 16 yields energy of around 7 MT. The size of this bomb was around 5 feet 1.4 inches in diameter, 24 feet 8.7 inches (7.54 m) in length, and weighed around 39,000 lb
MK – 53 or B 53 Nuclear Bomb
Designed between the year 1958 to 1961, Mk/B 53 thermonuclear bomb was designed by LANL and manufactured by Atomic Energy Commission. This bomb was developed as a bunker buster weapon. The bomb entered the service of the United States Armed Forces in the year 1962. Initially, this bomb was intended to transmit shock waves through the earth to colleges its underground targets such as Bunkers.
The B 53 Nuclear Bomb was so powerful that it released energy of around 9.5 MT. In the year 1988, some B53 bombs were upgraded to B53 Mod 1 standards for enhanced safety. These bombs got retired in the 1980s. The size of B53s was 12 feet 4 inches in length and 50 inches in diameter.
Mk – 36 Nuclear Bomb
Developed in the 1950s, Mark 36 was a heavy nuclear bomb that used a multi-stage fusion secondary system. It was designed to yield energy of up 19 MT. Actually, this bomb was an upgraded version of the Mark 21 nuclear bomb. This bomb used to have 2 major variants. The first variant was a dirty weapon that used Y1 mechanism. The other variant used a low fission fraction and it was called clean Y2 variant.
The clean variant of the bomb is used to yield energy of up to 6 megatons on the other hand, the dirty variant is used to yield energy of up to 19 megatons. All of these bombs were retired from the service between August 1961 and January 1962. If you want to have a look at a Mark 36 bomb then you can visit the Cold War Gallery at the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio.
Test 123 (Joe 106)
Test 123 is a code name given to the nuclear bomb test by the Soviet Union on 23rd October 1961. The bomb was dropped a week earlier than the “Tsar Bomb”. It is believed that Test 123 was 830 times more powerful than the Hiroshima bomb. The test was conducted in NZ Area C Sukhoy Nos, Novaya Zemlya. The energy yield by this bomb was around 12.5 megatons. As per the information available in the Journal Polar Geography article published in 1966, there used to be a small population that lived in the area before the test was conducted.
MK – 24 or B 24 Nuclear Bomb
Mark 24 was the third American Thermonuclear bomb test. Talking about its size, we can say that this bomb was huge. The length of this bomb was around 296 and its weight was around 42000 pounds. To slow down its descent, the bomb included a parachute of 64 feet in diameter. The energy yield by the B24 bomb was around 15 megatons. You can check out the casing of the Mark 24 bomb that is still on display in the Castle Air Museum in Atwater, CA.
MK – 17 Nuclear Bomb
We can say that Mark 17 was the first mass-produced hydrogen bomb that was developed by the United States. The power of the bomb was enough to yield an energy up to 15 megaton. An accident is also associated with these bombs. In the year 1957, The device fell through the closed bomb bay doors of the bomber. The conventional explosive of the device detonated by the impact. Thankfully, chain reactions weren’t possible because as a safety precaution the plutonium pits were stored separately on the plane. Still, the incident spread radioactive contamination about 1.6 km of the area.
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TX – 21 “Shrimp”
Based on the Shrimp prototype, the Mark 21 nuclear bomb was produced in the year 1955. This bomb was designed to be delivered only by a bomber. According to the claims of the United States Air force, the bomb could yield energy of up to 18 megatons. However, the bomb was never tested. This bomb was equipped with a two-stage deployment system. It also includes a 24 feet (7.3 m) main ribbon canopy which is used to slow down the falling time up to 108 seconds.
B – 41 Nuclear Bomb
Without a doubt, B 41 aka Mk-41 is the most powerful number bomb of the United States. It can yield energy of up to 25 megatons. It is a fission-fusion-fusion-fission type thermonuclear weapon or tertiary stage bomb. The size of this bomb was also humongous. It was around 3.76 m long, with a body diameter of 1.32 m. It used to weigh around 4,840 Kg. US Air Force used planes such as B-52 Stratofortress and B-47 Stratojet to carry these bombs. B-41 entered the service in 1961. The last bomb got retired in July 1976
The Tsar Bomba was the most powerful thermonuclear bomb ever denoted on the earth. The bomb was developed in the Soviet Union (USSR) by a group of nuclear physicists under the leadership of Igor Kurchatov. The bomb was tested on 30th October 1961. It yields energy of up to 50 megatons. This bomb is known by many other names such as “Tsar Bomba”. The exact translation of Tsar Bomba is King of bombs. As per many reports, the Tsar Bomba could have been more powerful. Initially, it was designed to have an explosive yield of up to 100 megatons.
Nuclear Bombs are weapons of mass destruction. Any accident related to these weapons can result in the death of millions of people. The only way to nullify nuclear risks is to eliminate nuclear weapons from the planet. There are many organizations around the world that are working to stop the production of nuclear weapons including the union of concerned scientists USA. What do you think about nuclear weapons let us know in the comment section. You can also share your feedback and suggestions in the comment box.