Race for the Hydrogen Bomb

World War II's end signified the beginning of the race to develop a weapon even more potent than the atomic bomb: the hydrogen bomb. While many who had witnessed the destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki caused by the atomic bomb opposed the H-bomb's development, others felt it was the only way to protect the lives of innocent people from another power's nuclear attack.

Amid secrecy and suspicions of espionage, the American and Soviet nuclear programs took root and grew, and the race for the hydrogen bomb was on.


Part I: Genesis
Scientists explore the possibility of a fusion bomb.
Part IV: Entering the Thermonuclear Era
The world's first thermonuclear device is exploded'
The world's first thermonuclear device is exploded.
Part II: The Classic Super is Born
The Classic Super is Born
Edward Teller leads the efforts to develop the 'super'.
Part V: The Red Scare
Fears of the Soviet Union's influence.
Part III: A Shock from the Soviets
Soviet Union explodes an atomic bomb
The Soviet Union explodes an atomic bomb.
Part VI: Under the Thermonuclear Shadow
The BRAVO test

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National Science FoundationNational Science Digital LibraryNuclear Pathways Member SiteThis project is part of the National Science Digital Library and was funded by the Division of Undergraduate Education, National Science Foundation Grant 0434253