11.05.

1998: India Tests its First Thermonuclear Bomb: Shakti I

1998: India Tests its First Thermonuclear Bomb: Shakti I
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 11 May 1998
  • India tested its first thermonuclear bomb, Shakti I, in its most desolate area - the famous Thar Desert, near the India-Pakistan border.

On this day in 1998, India tested its first thermonuclear bomb.

Thermonuclear bombs use the energy of a fission bomb to compress and heat fusion fuel. Such bombs are significantly stronger than ordinary fission bombs in which the energy is only released during a nuclear fission (the splitting of atoms).

Thermonuclear bombs regularly “exploit” fission atomic bombs as their first stage (a kind of “lighter”).

After classical nuclear fission (a high temperature is required to initiate a nuclear fission), the fusion of light elements around the core can take place, i.e. this is the second stage.

Fusion produces a strong explosion, theoretically 1,000 times stronger than explosion produced by a fission core.

India tested the bomb test in its most desolate area – the famous Thar Desert, near the India-Pakistan border.

The location is known as the “Test area Pokhran”, and is located in the heart of the Thar Desert, about 80 kilometers from the border with Pakistan.

It is interesting to note that the Indians called the first thermonuclear bomb “Shakti I”. The word “shakti” means “power”, “force” or “energy” in Sanskrit.

It was a 45-58-kiloton explosion, which is stronger than the Hiroshima bomb’s explosion.

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