But let’s be honest: Most people, even in the moderate damage zone, won’t survive. Hardly Anyone can live or work in almost windowless reinforced concrete buildings. (Even people at a bank would have to get into the vault to be in the safest place; people in a subway would get the most benefit in a station that’s very deep underground.) Most People live in timber-frame and other less-armored structures.
This shouldn’t be construed as a way to be safe in a nuclear explosion, says Dylan SpauldingA nuclear expert and earth scientist at the Union This is Concerned Scientists. Strong Concrete structures with metal reinforcement, designed for seismic security, would survive the pressures that the team modelled. However, those pressures would be enough not to cause damage to traditional wood-framed houses or brick structures without reinforcement.
And He points out that blast waves are only one part of the story. While it is the main source of danger in a non-nuclear explosion—like the one that rocked Beirut 2020, which was caused by a large quantity of flammable ammonium nitrate stored at the city’s port—nuclear weapons also throw out ionizing radiation and heat, followed by radioactive fallout.
Radiation Exposition through the skin and inhalation can result in serious consequences Many health effects, including skin burns, organ damage, and Cancer. The The radiation exposure range could reach tens to miles away from the epicenter. This means that people who survive the blast might be killed by the radiation.
Drikakis’ example focused on what’s called a “strategic” However, nuke can be deployed on an ICBM. “tactical” Nukes are weapons that are dropped from a plane onto a battlefield, and then explode on the ground. Such Explosions are unpredictable and can be equally deadly and destructive. This could expose more people to radiation doses that can cause death. Spaulding says.
Russia The US also owns so-called low-yield nuclear weapons. These have 5 to 10 Kilotons of yield, and are slightly smaller than the 15-kiloton Bomb dropped on them. Hiroshima. These However, it would still cause massive destruction and cross a red line, potentially escalating a conflict to larger weapons.
Humanity’s most destructive weapons have been used in war only once, when the US demolished Hiroshima Nagasaki, JapanWith two atomic bombs at its end. Second World War 1945 Together They killed more than 100,000 Japanese Civilians and many other injured people. And Spaulding It is also worth mentioning that experiments carried out at the Nevada Test SiteThey provide some of the best evidence available about which structures can withstand an atomic blast and how they perform.
But Last year Russian President Vladimir Putin Assumed that Nukes are not off of the table His attack on Ukraine. While NATO leaders have not used such threatening language, according to the international organization conducted nuclear exercises In October, simulating dropping B61 nuclear bombs. US President Joe Biden’s Nuclear Posture Review The same month was a “no first use” He supported policy that he had previously supported. One We could also imagine nuclear risks in other conflict areas, such as the possibility of North Korea Use a nuke to combat South KoreaYou can also call it: Pakistan India They can be used against one another.
The world’s arsenals add up to about 12,700 warheads, according to an inventory by the Federation This is American Scientists. That’s fewer than their peak of around 70,000 near the end of the Cold WarThis is thanks to arms reduction agreements. But Some of them Since then, all pacts have been dismantledThese dangers have not gone away. Doomsday Clock’s metaphor illustrates.
This This is not a game. Drikakis says. The He says that the risks of a nuclear attack are very real. “We have to maintain peace by understanding the risks of not maintaining the peace.”