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One day that started the arms race August 30, 2009

Posted by apetrov in Near Physics, Science.

There are two two days in the history of the world that started the (nuclear) arms race between the USA and the Soviet Union in the second half of the last century. The first day is July 16, 1945 — the day of the Trinity Test. The second one is August 29, 1949. So exactly 60 years ago today Soviet Union exploded its own atomic device (the so-called RDS-1 (“Rocket Engine of Stalin-1”), or Joe-1, as it was known in the West). Some of the brightest physicists of that time worked on the Manhattan Project and Soviet Atomic Project. Did the result save the world from another World War? Or paved the way for future political instabilities? Or simply gave us another source of energy? Time will tell. If you interested in the historico-technical side of this story, the model of that RDS-1 device is in the museum of nuclear weapons in Sarov.


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