Skip to comments.U.S. 'planned to blow up Moon' with nuke during Cold War
Posted on 11/27/2012 11:51:54 AM PST by the scotsman
'The U.S. had planned to blow up the moon with a nuclear bomb in the 1950s.
At the height of the space race, the U.S. considered detonating an atom bomb on the moon as a display of America's Cold War muscle.
The secret project, named 'A Study of Lunar Research Flights' and nicknamed 'Project A119,' however was never carried out.
America's planning included calculations by astronomer Carl Sagan, then a young graduate student, of the behavior of dust and gas generated by the blast, the Daily Mail reports.'
(Excerpt) Read more at uk.news.yahoo.com ...
“Why the U.S. wanted to nuke the moon during the Cold War”
‘In the 1950s, with a young Carl Sagan lending a hand, America considered a novel way to outshine the Soviets’
By Peter Weber | November 26, 2012
Apparently they had never watched Space:1999
“blow up the moon” and “explode a nuclear bomb on the moon” are two different things.
I remember back in the fifties when grade ‘Z’ sci-fi was king there was a movie in which the bad guys were going to move the Moon closer to the Earth to create a stronger gravitational pull, and create havoc for some reason I cannot remember. I’m sure it was logical to somebody at the time.
I remember the scenes of the Moon ringed with a flash of light that appeared to be dust, each time they did whatever they did to goose the Moon towards the Earth.
Wondering if that stupid movie was based on this concept, or what?
Where's the kaboom. There was supposed to be a moon-shattering kaboom.
In the annals of military research and history, virtually every idea, idiotic or otherwise has been considered at one time or another. The imperial japanese researched dropping plague infested lice on chinese cities, but found that the lice didn’t survive the initial airburst well.
Then there is Cobalt Thorium G.
The intent of this nonsense can only be to disparage the United States in public, to destroy it's reputation for global political gain. And nonsense it is.
If a nuclear weapon could in fact be detonated on the Moon, the force would almost exclusively be directed into space. And with no atmosphere, I don't think the damage would be significant at all.
To cause damage, the explosion would have to take place deep inside the Moon. And the explosion would have to be absolutely massive.
It would be no simple single missile explode on impact effort.
If a massive enough bomb were to be detonated splitting up the moon, the parts would not be equal. There would be small parts and massive parts. Portions sped up by the blast could jettison into space. Portions slowed, could lose orbital inertia.
It could become a planetary killer of an event, our planet being the damaged party, subsequent to the moon's destruction.
I don't believe the U. S. ever had a plan drawn up for this purpose. It's irrational beyond belief.
Does this sound like Palestinian propaganda to anyone else. LMAO, stuff for the funny papers...
The Premier loves surprises!!!
The proposal, never more than that, was to detonate an atomic bomb on the Moon. Deathstar technology is still a bit beyond our reach more than fifty years later.
Just plan ignorance, the very heart of our legacy media.
The kind of thinking leading up to blowing up the moon is similar to the irrational thinking that humans, and not the Sun, are changing Earth’s climate.
“...’Project A119,’ however was never carried out.”
LOL, no sh!t.
1. The biggest nuke we could have detonated at the height of the Cold War might have added a barely visible crater to the moon IF we could have delivered it there.
2. Without any atmosphere, most blast shock effect would be missing and the heat and radiation would be wasted.
3. If some idiot DID succeed in damaging the moon, there's a very good chance that life on Earth would be irrevocably changed as well.
Any damn fool who would come up with an idea like this should have been fired and then barred from any further government work.
I think the blast wouldn’t have even been visible from earth with the naked eye. An 8” telescope can resolve something like 1.2km on the moon. And “resolve” means be abe to tell one thing from another.
Possibly a minor glint of the flash for a few seconds, maybe? Maybe a little atmospheric dust detected in telescopes? Certainly is was something that the Soviet public would have never known about. At best, some soviet scientist may have found out about it and reported it upwards.
But if they were hoping for some dramatic blast. No way.
Even then, what was the concept? Were they supposed to see us attack the moon, conclude we were nuts, and that they should stay far away from us?
That could have messed up a lot of classic song titles..
Moonlight Fall-Out O’er Miami
Pulverized Moon River
Blue Moon Go Booom!
Brian Williams, spokesman for the blame America first coalition, ran this story on last night’s Nightly News. The smug bastard never met a more stupid story.
What the hell happened to fact checking in the news room ?
Blow up the moon?
Think of all the surfboard shops/manufacturers that would be out of business. Not to mention how many ticked off surfers there’d be.
“Dude! Where’s the moon?”
“I don’t know bro, but where are the curls, man?”
” blow up the moon and explode a nuclear bomb on the moon are two different things.”
As per usual, the commentary on FR is more perceptive than the third-rate crap dished out by the MSM.
To put things in perspective, a scientific assessment of the likely consequences of a collision between the asteroid YU55 and the earth, as reported by the “Telegraph” of London:
“If it were to hit the earth, the asteroid, named YU55, would have an impact equivalent to 65,000 atom bombs and would leave a crater more than six miles wide and 2,000ft deep.”
So in other words if we were able to deliver 65,000 atom bombs to a specific location on the moon simultaneously, we might have been able to do some significant damage to it (but we still wouldn’t have “blown it up”). Indeed, the crater in the scenario above would be small potatoes compared to those which are visible (essentially to the naked eye) from earth.
It’s so obvious that one atomic bomb would do nothing, and probably not even be visible with the naked eye.
This is obvious withing 5 minutes on FR. This is one of two things, playing the “Look how stupid America is game”.
Or, it was some obscure academic lab exercise that Carl Sagan was involved in as a student and it makes a cool story to pretend it was real.
I can see having a grad student in some lab calculate what the effect of a nuke on the moon would be for pure academic reasons. We were right in the middle of aggressive testing then to learn everything we could about them.
But it’s a near certainty that there was never a plan to do this. Someone else pointed out that we couldnt do low earth orbit yet, and we were going to send a rocket, ANY ROCKET, to the moon? Please.
In his later years, Sagan had an office in the Space Science Building at Cornell. I never got to see him on campus but I enjoyed the cartoons he used to leave on his office door when he was away. He also became a controversial anti-nuclear activist. I recall him protesting with a group at the Nevada test site.
It is true that Edward Teller, at the time the first A-Bomb was to be tested in southern New Mexico, believed the explosion might ignite the entire earth’s atmosphere — he went forward with the test anyway. It seems they don’t ask our consent in such matters. National Security, you know?
Those explosions were primarily Viking rockets, I seem to remember, developed for the Navy by a civilian contractor.
Huntsville, home of military rocket development, was supposed to keep hands off the space program, so the available V-2 and Redstone rockets were off limits for the space program.
After Sputnik, the complexion of the space race changed radically. The United States panicked. Ultimately we did what should have been done initially, namely use Redstone rockets to put a satellite in orbit.
All this is from memory, so if I'm wrong on details, c'est la vie.
Bright kid. He ought to get ahead in the moon.
Among my elementary school cohort the Vanguard rocket model kit was the least desired. Well, except for re-enactment of the fiery crashes simulated by packing it with strike anywhere match heads and set off with gasoline soaked string. Ah, the days before the nannies fell upon the youth of America.