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H-Bomb vaporizes Elugelab

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“Ivy’s explosion broke the stillness of a mid-Pacific morning on Nov. 1, 1952; at 7:15 a.m., observers on ships and planes 50 miles away watched an enormous deep-orange fireball blaze up in the distance. Then it rose to the stratosphere, trailed by a churning grey-brown pillar of water and the pulverized remains of the little sandspit of Elugelab. As the cloud cooled, it began to billow outward. Its colors lost their infernal intensity, paled to harmless-looking but deadly pastels. Then, slowly the 100-mile-wide cauliflower drifted away and disappeared.” — TIME, April 26th 1954.

About the test–and the subsequent one 15 days later–the public only heard rumors for more than a year. Only in the early 1954 that the government decided to release the full story. In March 1954, the press published some statistics about the blast, along with black and white photographs. Some still-cuts from color motion pictures followed. In the April 26th issue of the TIME magazine, it published the first color pictures of the test, which was taken with a still camera of the explosion at Elugelab. Above was one of those pictures.

Elugelab, part of the Enewetak Atoll, was completely vaporized by the weapon.

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Written by Alex Selwyn-Holmes

July 30, 2009 at 5:07 am

Posted in Industries, Politics, War

Tagged with , ,

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