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Shaped nuclear charge

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Nemmerle, Sep 7, 2009.

  1. Nemmerle

    Nemmerle OMG Member

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    Shaped nuclear charge

    Unfortunately most of the more interesting research about this is, from what I've been able to gather, still classified but I ran across a pretty neat idea recently.

    Say you have a nuke, now say you encase that nuke in an x-ray opaque material with a hole at one end - uranium for instance, (directs the x-rays in one direction.) Now imagine you place atop that hole some beryllium oxide, (x-ray interaction should give you heat) and place another substance atop that. Preferably one with a low Z number. Now whatever you stick there is going to be turned into a stream of really hot plasma and directed out at a relatively narrow angle....

    :naughty:

    Thought it was a kinda cool concept.
     
  2. Evil

    Evil OMG Member

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    Re: Shaped nuclear charge

    High explosive anti-tank warheads also create a plasma jet but without all that nasty radiation.
     
  3. Ki Adi Mundi

    Ki Adi Mundi I decimate ninjas.

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    Re: Shaped nuclear charge

    Hmmmm. Seems like we're on the road to radioactive lightsabers!

    I do wonder, however, how much of a damage difference there is between a "shaped" nuclear warhead, and one that is not "shaped."
     
  4. Wasturr

    Wasturr OMG Member

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    Re: Shaped nuclear charge

    Probably follows the same rules that apply to any explosive material.
     
  5. cbstevens

    cbstevens OMG Member

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    John Nuckolls once did calculations for a "shaped charge" laser fusion target. Most output from laser fusion is 14 MeV neutrons. Deposit these in the right way in a block of lithium and you can generate two opposed plasma jets. This makes possible more readily converting the energy output through MHD generators. Another case of shaped thermonuclear charges is that of utilizing spin polarized fusion fuel. Instead of the fusion products coming out isotropically in all directions, they are initially confined to a double cone.
     
  6. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye OMG Member

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    A nuclear detonation is so large that making it a shaped charge is pointless. Shaped charges are used for precise work and nukes are for maximum destruction.

    There have been tactical nuke artillery shells for a very long time, including nuke shell options for the big guns on navy ships. Don't need tiny nukes for things like taking out armor. There are many options that do the job perfectly well without contaminating everything in sight. The depleted uranium rounds all over the damn place are bad enough to deal with.

    The tactical nuke commonly called the backpack nuke is fairly small. Takes out about a square mile with minimal rads. Just knowing that those little bastards exist is enough to worry about the possibility of one getting into the hands of a maniac.

    Things were so much better back in the sticky-stabby, sword and axe days.
     
  7. Ki Adi Mundi

    Ki Adi Mundi I decimate ninjas.

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    Yeah. I can do without the radiation. I'm fair skinned, you know. Might give me cancer or something...
     
  8. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye OMG Member

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    If nukes start flying, I hope the first one hits me. The aftermath of global nuclear war will be most unpleasant.

    I could wait it out in the caves and survive. I'm afraid I would come out to a world of parrot beaked mutants with flippers. Imagine a world of creatures that look like Arch.:D
     
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