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Trinity (nuclear test)

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The Trinity explosion, 16 ms after detonation. The viewed hemisphere's highest point in this image is about 200 metres (660 ft) high.
Film about Trinity test

Trinity test was the first test of a nuclear weapon. It took place on July 16, 1945 during the Manhattan Project. The code name Trinity was given by American physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer.


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Radioactive fallout after Trinity. New Mexico is shown in Yellow. This image still uses the unit Röntgen. 5 Roentgen are about 50 Millisievert. Radiation sickness occurs at about ten times that does, at about 700 Millisievert. Being exposed to 100 Mlilisievert means that the lifetime risk of getting cancer increases by about one percent.[1][2][3]

A tower-like structure was used for the experiment. This favored radioactive fallout. The landscape and the winds meant that "radioactive hot spots" formed. For four to five days after the experiment, farmers observed a flour-like white fallout. People about 20 kilometres (12 mi) around the site used rainwater for drinking. The people in the area were not warned, or informed about ways to protect themselves. There were no evacuations. Instruments that were not adapted to do these measurements registered explosion rates up to 1.4 µC/kg/s. It was nearly impossible to assess the risk of contamination through α-radiation that came from about 4.8 kilograms (11 lb) of unexploded Plutonium. Even today, several decades after the event, the measurements of the experiment have not been rigurously analized. The amount of contamination of the affected public, through contaminated air, water and food, is unknown [4]

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  1. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-japan-quake-radiation-idUSTRE72E14R20110315
  2. http://radjournal.com/articles/radiation/low%20levels%20risk.htm
  3. https://rense.com/general94/undertnd.htm
  4. T.E. Widner, S.M. Flack: Characterization of the world’s first nuclear explosion, the Trinity test, as a source of public radiation exposure. In: Health Phys, 98, 2010, pp. 480–497; doi:10.1097/HP.0b013e3181c18168; PMID 20147790; Archived [Date missing] at chemrisk.com [Error: unknown archive URL] (PDF)