How Much Damage Can a Nuclear Bomb Cause?

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Published in: Google Maps

Nuclear weapons cause catastrophic damage but have you ever wondered what would be the actual extent of destruction if atomic bombs of various intensity were dropped on some city?

nuclear bomb damage Project damage from Nuclear Bombs in New Delhi

For instance, the map of the left illustrates the damage radius if a B61 gravity bomb exploded in some part of Delhi while the right aerial map illustrates damage that can be caused by Russia’s Tsar Bomba - the largest and most powerful hydrogen bomb ever detonated.

To calculate the devastating effect of nuclear bombs on any city, go to Ground Zero - this is a Google Maps mashup that gives an idea of the damage radius that can be caused by various nuclear bombs.

You search for a location on the Google Map and then select the type of bomb ranging from Little Boy to a massive Asteroid that possibly eliminated dinosaurs from our planet.

While the “Ground Zero” program does not take into account real-life factors like the terrain, mountains or height of the explosion, it does give you a good idea of the kind of damage these nuclear weapons are capable of.

Nuclear Weapon Explosion - Simulation

According to Encarta, the damage radius increases with the power of the nuclear bomb, approximately in proportion to its cube root. If exploded at the optimum height, therefore, a 10-megaton weapon, which is 1,000 times as powerful as a 10-kiloton weapon, will increase the distance tenfold, that is, out to 17.7 km (11 mi) for severe damage and 24 km (15 mi) for moderate damage of a frame house.

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Published in: Google Maps

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Web Geek, Google Developer Expert
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Amit Agarwal

Amit Agarwal is a Google Developer Expert in Google Workspace and Google Apps Script. He holds an engineering degree in Computer Science (I.I.T.) and is the first professional blogger in India. He is the developer of Mail Merge for Gmail and Document Studio. Read more on Lifehacker and YourStory

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