2012: Ultra-Fast Nuclear Detonation Pictures

10-nanosecond long images taken 1 millisecond after various nuclear explosions While the image is the stereotypical picture of a nuclear explosion, in reality by the time the classic mushroom cloud has formed all the interesting detail is long over. The following images, borrowed from several sources, show the eerie and complex patterns atomic detonations create immediately after they are triggered. Most of the following images were taken using Rapatronic cameras, ultra-high-speed, single-frame cameras developed in the 1940s by Dr. Harold Edgerton. The duration of the exposure is typically 10 nanoseconds (0.00000001 of a second. That’s so short that light, which can travel a distance equal to 7 times around the earth in 1 second, would only cover 98 feet.) This image captures two common elements: the spikes (called “rope tricks”) and uneven surface shape. At this stage of the detonation, the surface of the fireball has a temperature of 20,000 […] Read More