China's First Atomic Bomb

2009-09-07 17:08 BJT

China exploded an atomic bomb at 15:00 on October 16, 1964, thereby successfully carrying out its first nuclear test.
China exploded an atomic bomb at 15:00 on October 16, 1964, thereby 
successfully carrying out its first nuclear test.

China exploded an atomic bomb at 15:00 on October 16, 1964, thereby successfully carrying out its first nuclear test. This is a major achievement of the Chinese people in their struggle to strengthen their national defense, one remarkable achievement in the science and technology development, signifying China's defense modernization has entered a new stage.

Nuclear weapons make use of fission. Fission splits the nucleus of a U-235 or Plutonium atom, releasing neutrons. These neutrons in turn collide with other nuclei, splitting them and releasing more neutrons. This process continues until a chain reaction is sufficiently sustained. Fusion bombs rely on this method to start the reaction. However, once it begins, a fusion reaction is also sustained using Tritium and Deuterium. This significantly increases the power of the weapon. The simplest method to construct a nuclear device is to essentially place two sub-critical masses of U-235 in a containment area.

Based on the international situation after the World War II and the Korea War, China started its nuclear program, and the formal work was initiated in 1960. Two years later, Deng Jiaxian and other scientists drafted the theory plan of China's first atomic bomb, and completed the work three years later. On October 16, 1964, China successfully detonated an atomic bomb in Lop Nor in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, thus becoming the third country to possess the atom bomb, following the United States and the former Soviet Union.

Editor: Zhang Ning | Source: