FIRST - Nuclear Device Explosion - Trinity Site, White Sands Proving Grounds
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Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member rilekyle
N 33° 40.638 W 106° 28.517
13S E 363241 N 3727353
Quick Description: The Trinity Site is the location where the first nuclear device was exploded on the morning of July 16, 1945.
Location: New Mexico, United States
Date Posted: 11/18/2006 8:34:01 PM
Waymark Code: WMZ0C
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member The Blue Quasar
Views: 657

Long Description:
Trinity Site is where the first atomic bomb was tested at 5:29:45 a.m. Mountain War Time on July 16, 1945. The 19-kiloton explosion not only led to a quick end to the war in the Pacific but also ushered the world into the atomic age. All life on Earth has been touched by the event which took place here.

The test was scheduled for 4 a.m. July 16, but rain and lightning early that morning caused it to be postponed. The device could not be exploded under rainy conditions because rain and winds would increase the danger from radioactive fallout and interfere with observation of the test. At 4:45 a.m. the crucial weather report came through announcing calm to light winds with broken clouds for the following two hours.

At 5:10 the countdown started and at 5:29:45 the device exploded successfully. To most observers the brilliance of the light from the explosion--watched through dark glasses--overshadowed the shock wave and sound that arrived later.

Although no information on the test was released until after the atomic bomb was used as a weapon against Japan, people in New Mexico knew something had happened. The shock broke windows 120 miles away and was felt by many at least 160 miles away. Army officials simply stated that a munitions storage area had accidently exploded at the Alamogordo Bombing Range.

The explosion did not make much of a crater. Most eyewitnesses describe the area as more of a small depression instead of a crater. The heat of the blast vaporized the steel tower and melted the desert sand and turned it into a green glassy substance. It was called Trinitite and can still be seen in the area. At one time Trinitite completely covered the depression made by the explosion. Afterwards the depression was filled and much of the Trinitite was taken away by the Nuclear Energy Commission.
FIRST - Classification Variable: Item or Event

Date of FIRST: 07/16/1945

More Information - Web URL: [Web Link]

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