Because Science

The Day We Almost Set the World on Fire

While humanity has a better understanding of nuclear science now, when the first nuclear weapons were being developed, there were some serious questions about what the scientists were dealing with. Particular, would the first nuclear explosion test ignite the Earth’s atmosphere with it? Kyle terms back the clock to take a closer look at this question and more in this episode of Because Science!

Learn More:
Reference paper: in new tab
Factor of safety: in new tab
The weight of a butterfly: in new tab
Nuclear war as a global catastrophic risk: in new tab
Inverse Compton scattering: in new tab
The impossibility of atmospheric fire: in new tab
Bethe, Teller, Trinity, and the End of Earth: in new tab
Radiative processes in plasmas: in new tab
Bremsstrahlung main losses: in new tab