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Old 2019-08-25, 14:26   #166
Nick
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
Except when it didn't.
By "this part of the world", I didn't actually mean the whole of Europe, as I suspect you realize!

The challenge now, of course, is to follow kladner's lead and set xilman's list to classical music.
I'll start:

1830–1831 November Uprising: Chopin Étude in C minor opus 10 number 12 ("Revolutionary")
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOBr_s0sYcI
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Old 2019-08-26, 02:57   #167
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Dmitri Shostakovich Symphony No. 11 `The year 1905'

There is some commentary, including an interview with the composer and his son Maxim. The music begins about 6 minutes in.
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Old 2019-08-26, 21:44   #168
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Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
After what apparently was a recent missile test accident involving the release of radioactive material, Russia has been trying to hush it up, as described in many news articles, e.g. this one.

There is also a news story that four nearby Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization monitoring stations "went dark" shortly after the accident.

[W.C. Fields voice] It must be a coincidence [/W.C. Fields voice]
According to former UNSCOM weapons inspector Scott Ritter, no nuclear-powered cruise missiles were injured in the making of this accident:

The Media’s Russian Radiation Story Implodes Upon Scrutiny | The American Conservative
Quote:
[Description of MSM propaganda/speculation/rumor pile-on snipped]

...Here’s the real story of what actually happened at Nenoksa.

Liquid-fuel ballistic missiles are tricky things. Most Russian liquid-fueled missiles make use of hypergolic fuels, consisting of a fuel (in most cases asymmetrical dimethylhydrazine, or heptyl) and an oxidizer (nitrogen tetroxide), which, when combined, spontaneously combust. For this to happen efficiently, the fuel and oxidizer need to be maintained at “room temperature,” generally accepted as around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. For missiles stored in launch silos, or in launch canisters aboard submarines, temperature control is regulated by systems powered by the host—either a generator, if in a silo, or the submarine’s own power supply, if in a canister.

Likewise, the various valves, switches, and other components critical to the successful operation of a liquid-fuel ballistic missile, including onboard electronics and guidance and control systems, must be maintained in an equilibrium, or steady state, until launch. The electrical power required to accomplish this is not considerable, but it must be constant. Loss of power will disrupt the equilibrium of the missile system, detrimentally impacting its transient response at time of launch and leading to failure.

Russia has long been pursuing so-called “autonomous” weapons that can be decoupled from conventional means of delivery—a missile silo or a submarine—and instead installed in canisters that protect them from the environment. They would then be deployed on the floor of the ocean, lying in wait until remotely activated. One of the major obstacles confronting the Russians is the need for system equilibrium, including the onboard communications equipment, prior to activation. The power supply for any system must be constant, reliable, and capable of operating for extended periods of time without the prospect of fuel replenishment.

The solution for this power supply problem is found in so-called “nuclear batteries,” or radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG). An RTG generates electricity using thermocouples that convert the heat released by the decay of radioactive material. RTGs have long been used in support of operations in space. The Russians have long used them to provide power to remote unmanned facilities in the arctic and in mountainous terrain. Cesium-137, a byproduct of the fission of U-235, is considered an ideal radioisotope for military application RTGs.

On August 8, a joint team from the Ministry of Defense and the All-Russian Research Institute of Experimental Physics, subordinated to the State Atomic Energy Corporation (ROSATOM), conducted a test of a liquid-fueled rocket engine, in which electric power from Cesium-137 “nuclear batteries” maintained its equilibrium state. The test was conducted at the Nenoksa State Central Marine Test Site (GTsMP), a secret Russian naval facility known as Military Unit 09703. It took place in the waters of the White Sea, off the coast of the Nenoksa facility, onboard a pair of pontoon platforms.

The test had been in the making for approximately a year. What exactly was being tested and why remain a secret, but the evaluation went on for approximately an hour. It did not involve the actual firing of the engine, but rather the non-destructive testing of the RTG power supply to the engine.

The test may have been a final system check—the Russian deputy defense minister, Pavel Popov, monitored events from the Nenoksa military base. Meanwhile, the deputy head of research and testing at the All-Russian Research Institute of Experimental Physics, Vyasheslav Yanovsky, considered to be one of Russia’s most senior nuclear scientists, monitored events onboard the off-shore platform. Joining Yanovsky were seven other specialists from the institute, including Vyacheslav Lipshev, the head of the research and development team. They accompanied representatives from the Ministry of Defense, along with specialists from the design bureau responsible for the liquid-fuel engine.

When the actual testing finished, something went very wrong. According to a sailor from the nearby Severdvinsk naval base, the hypergolic fuels contained in the liquid engine (their presence suggests that temperature control was one of the functions being tested) somehow combined. This created an explosion that destroyed the liquid engine, sending an unknown amount of fuel and oxidizer into the water. At least one, and perhaps more, of the Cesium-137 RTGs burst open, contaminating equipment and personnel alike.

Four men—two Ministry of Defense personnel and two ROSATOM scientists—were killed immediately. Those who remained on the damaged platform were taken to the Nenoksa base and decontaminated, before being transported to a local military clinic that specializes in nuclear-related emergencies. Here, doctors in full protective gear oversaw their treatment and additional decontamination. All of them survived.

Three of the ROSATOM scientists were thrown by the explosion into the waters of the White Sea and were rescued only after a lengthy search. These men were transported to the Arkhangelsk hospital. Neither the paramedics who attended to the injured scientists, nor the hospital staff who received them, were informed that the victims had been exposed to Cesium-137, leading to the cross-contamination of the hospital staff and its premises.

The next day, all the personnel injured during the test were transported to Moscow for treatment at a facility that specializes in radiation exposure; two of the victims pulled from the water died en route. Medical personnel involved in treating the victims were likewise dispatched to Moscow for evaluation; one doctor was found to be contaminated with Cesium-137.

The classified nature of the test resulted in the Russian government taking precautions to control information concerning the accident. The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) seized all the medical records associated with the treatment of accident victims and had the doctors and medical personnel sign non-disclosure agreements.

The Russian Meteorological Service (Roshydromet) operates what’s known as the Automatic Radiation Monitoring System (ASKRO) in the city of Severdvinsk. ASKRO detected two “surges” in radiation, one involving Gamma particles, the other Beta particles. This is a pattern consistent with the characteristics of Cesium-137, which releases Gamma rays as it decays, creating Barium-137m, which is a Beta generator. The initial detection was reported on the Roshydromet website, though it was subsequently taken offline.

Specialized hazardous material teams scoured the region around Nenoksa, Archangesk, and Severdvinsk, taking air and environmental samples. All these tested normal, confirming that the contamination created by the destruction of the Cesium-137 batteries was limited to the area surrounding the accident. Due to the large amount of missile fuel that was spilled, special restrictions concerning fishing and swimming were imposed in the region’s waters — at least until the fuel was neutralized by the waters of the White Sea. The damage had been contained, and the threat was over.

The reality of what happened at Nenoksa is tragic. Seven men lost their lives and scores of others were injured. But there was no explosion of a “nuclear cruise missile,” and it wasn’t the second coming of Chernobyl. America’s intelligence community and the so-called experts got it wrong — again. The root cause of their error is their institutional bias against Russia, which leads them to view that country in the worst possible light, regardless of the facts.

At a time when the level of mutual mistrust between our two nuclear-armed nations is at an all-time high, this kind of irresponsible rush to judgement must be avoided at all costs.
Ritter does not specifically address the nearby CNTBTO monitoring stations going dark in the days following, but the bit about "the classified nature of the test resulted in the Russian government taking precautions to control information concerning the accident" may encompass that. If indeed the stations were hacked, that was (IMO) both unnecessary and fuel for precisely the kinds of negative-propaganda-PR Ritter derides, but we are talking about "military security" here, overreach in maintenance of same is not exclusive to the Russian military.

Last fiddled with by ewmayer on 2019-08-26 at 21:48
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Old 2019-08-26, 23:58   #169
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Thanks for the fascinating post, Ernst.
This stuff must definitely be hush-hush for them to fabricate the cover story about the cruise missile.

But what about liquid fueled ICBMs ? I thought they had all been converted to solid fuels, including the Russian's missiles.
Do we have any liquid fueled ones left? If memory serves me, I seem to remember that most accidents of ICBMs involved liquid fuel, especially that really nasty one Involving Titans in Arkansas.

Last fiddled with by tServo on 2019-08-26 at 23:59
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Old 2019-08-27, 04:12   #170
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Thank you for the detailed account, Ernst. Scott Ritter has very much trust in my book. see: Iraq "WMDs."
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Old 2019-08-27, 13:03   #171
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewmayer View Post
According to former UNSCOM weapons inspector Scott Ritter, no nuclear-powered cruise missiles were injured in the making of this accident:

The Media’s Russian Radiation Story Implodes Upon Scrutiny | The American Conservative
<long quoted passage omitted>
Quote:
Ritter does not specifically address the nearby CNTBTO monitoring stations going dark in the days following, but the bit about "the classified nature of the test resulted in the Russian government taking precautions to control information concerning the accident" may encompass that. If indeed the stations were hacked, that was (IMO) both unnecessary and fuel for precisely the kinds of negative-propaganda-PR Ritter derides, but we are talking about "military security" here, overreach in maintenance of same is not exclusive to the Russian military.
Thanks for getting the thread back on track!

Ritter's account makes sense. The sort of weapon described -- a more-or-less conventional ballistic missile concealed somewhere on the ocean floor, ready to be activated by remote signal, fits the term "doomsday weapon."

The Russians' statement that the explosion occurred during a test of a "nuclear isotope power source of a rocket engine" seems to have been deliberately formulated to be uninformative. One of the things that bothered me about the idea of a nuclear reactor going kerflooey was, a witches' brew of highly radioactive fission products would almost certainly be spread so widely that tampering with a few nearby monitoring stations would not prevent their detection.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, a lot of Cesium-137 RTG's wound up basically being "abandoned in place," raising concerns about their being stolen and used by terrorists in "dirty bombs."

If you find it lamentable that, in the past, nuclear weapons and other radioactive items have accidently been left lying on the ocean floor, what do you think of deliberately placing a substantial number of nuclear weapons capable of activation, along with highly radioactive "nuclear batteries" on the ocean floor?

Perhaps the Russians are using hypergolic fuels for their "doomsday weapons" because -- given a steady power source to keep the components stable -- they are simple and reliable. For instance, they don't require an ignition system. The engines to get the Apollo modules on and off the surface of the Moon used hypergolic fuels. One reason for this choice was, they wanted to make as sure as possible that those engines would work. The cost in performance is probably offset for the "doomsday weapons" by decreasing the distance they have to travel in comparison to missiles launched from Russia.

Besides the use of liquid-fuel rockets requiring a constant power source to maintain their readiness, I also wonder about the nuclear warheads themselves. If these "autonomous weapons" are intended to be capable of "lying in wait" for goodness knows how long, the warheads themselves would have to remain usable for long periods without any maintenance. I vaguely recall reading that hydrogen bombs have radioactive constituents that need to be "refreshed" fairly often, so I wonder if perhaps these "doomsday weapons" are fission bombs.

A also wonder about the sources for Ritter's story. I imagine the FSB would like to have a chat with them -- before they put them in front of firing squads...

Last fiddled with by Dr Sardonicus on 2019-08-27 at 13:03 Reason: xignif sopty
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Old 2019-08-27, 20:16   #172
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tServo View Post
Thanks for the fascinating post, Ernst.
This stuff must definitely be hush-hush for them to fabricate the cover story about the cruise missile.
I was under the impression that the nuclear-cruise-missile-test claim was speculation/invention of the western media. From the first section of Ritter's article, which I omitted in my above excerptation (see article for embedded links here):
Quote:
[Arms Control Wonk blog editor Jeffrey] Lewis and his collaborators penned a breathless article for Foreign Policy that asked, “What Really Happened?” According to Lewis, the answer was clear: “The reference to radiation was striking—tests of missile engines don’t involve radiation. Well, with one exception: Last year, Russia announced it had tested a cruise missile powered by a nuclear reactor. It calls this missile the 9M730 Burevestnik. NATO calls it the SSC-X-9 Skyfall.”

Lewis’s assessment was joined by President Trump’s, who tweeted, “The United States is learning much from the failed missile explosion in Russia…. The Russian ‘Skyfall’ explosion has people worried about the air around the facility, and far beyond. Not good!” Trump’s tweet appeared to conform with the assessments of the intelligence community, which, according to [i]The New York Times[i], also attributed the accident to a failed test of the Skyfall missile.
Given last year's Wunderwaffen announcement speech by Putin and the post-acident secrecy, it's understandable the western media would speculate about the most exotic, dangerous weapon believed to be under development by the Russians - my real beef is that the western MSM don't even *try* to get the facts anymore. Actual journalism anymore is being conducted by a very small number of "roving homeless" reporter non grata types like Sy Hersh (who broke the real story of what actually happened at the US consulate in Benghazi, among other things, only to be ignored and shunned by the MSM as well as the US Congress in its subsequent Capitol Hill Kabuki which pretended to try to get at the bottom of what happened there) and a bunch of bloggers, who more often than not simply use the same publicly available online sources the MSM could use, had they any interest in truth-finding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
Besides the use of liquid-fuel rockets requiring a constant power source to maintain their readiness, I also wonder about the nuclear warheads themselves. If these "autonomous weapons" are intended to be capable of "lying in wait" for goodness knows how long, the warheads themselves would have to remain usable for long periods without any maintenance. I vaguely recall reading that hydrogen bombs have radioactive constituents that need to be "refreshed" fairly often, so I wonder if perhaps these "doomsday weapons" are fission bombs.
The key component needing refreshing in H-bombs is the several grams of Tritium, half-life 12 years, used to boost the yield of the fission primary. Wikipedia:
Quote:
Boosting

Before detonation, a few grams of tritium-deuterium gas are injected into the hollow "pit" of fissile plutonium or uranium. The early stages of the fission chain reaction supply enough heat and compression to start deuterium-tritium fusion, then both fission and fusion proceed in parallel, the fission assisting the fusion by continuing heating and compression, and the fusion assisting the fission with highly energetic (14.1 MeV) neutrons. As the fission fuel depletes and also explodes outward, it falls below the density needed to stay critical by itself, but the fusion neutrons make the fission process progress faster and continue longer than it would without boosting. Increased yield comes overwhelmingly from the increase in fission. The energy released by the fusion itself is much smaller because the amount of fusion fuel is so much smaller. The effects of boosting include:

o increased yield (for the same amount of fission fuel, compared to detonation without boosting)
o the possibility of variable yield by varying the amount of fusion fuel
o allowing the bomb to require a smaller amount of the very expensive fissile material – and also eliminating the risk of predetonation by nearby nuclear explosions
o not so stringent requirements on the implosion setup, allowing for a smaller and lighter amount of high-explosives to be used

The tritium in a warhead is continually undergoing radioactive decay, hence becoming unavailable for fusion. Furthermore its decay product, helium-3, absorbs neutrons if exposed to the ones emitted by nuclear fission. This potentially offsets or reverses the intended effect of the tritium, which was to generate many free neutrons, if too much helium-3 has accumulated from the decay of tritium. Therefore, it is necessary to replenish tritium in boosted bombs periodically. The estimated quantity needed is 4 grams per warhead.[3] To maintain constant levels of tritium, about 0.20 grams per warhead per year must be supplied to the bomb.

One mole of deuterium-tritium gas would contain about 3.0 grams of tritium and 2.0 grams of deuterium. In comparison, the 20 moles of plutonium in a nuclear bomb consists of about 4.5 kilograms of plutonium-239.

Tritium in hydrogen bomb secondaries

Since tritium undergoes radioactive decay, and is also difficult to confine physically, the much larger secondary charge of heavy hydrogen isotopes needed in a true hydrogen bomb uses solid lithium deuteride as its source of deuterium and tritium, producing the tritium in situ during secondary ignition.
IOW, we are almost certainly talking about more or less conventional H-bomb warheads, since an unboosted pure-fission weapon would have too low a yield to be useful as a nuclear deterrent. I expect modern such weapons have some kind of external tritium reservoir which allows a desired amount of the stuff to be injected into the fission core just prior to explosive compression - that would be the same method used to achieve the variable-yield capability, modified to take account of the radioactive decay of the tritium in the prefilled source reservoir, e.g. "Year 0: inject 4g of fresh T ... Year 12: inject 8g of half-decayed T". Note that the neutron sources which have replaced the older-style "urchin" neutron sources (based on shock-wave-resulting mixing of Be and Po in a small metal capsule inserted into the center of the fission core) in modern weapons is based on compact-linear-accelerator tech which also requires (or at least benefits from) a small amount of Tritium:
Quote:
Neutron generators are neutron source devices which contain compact linear particle accelerators and that produce neutrons by fusing isotopes of hydrogen together. The fusion reactions take place in these devices by accelerating either deuterium, tritium, or a mixture of these two isotopes into a metal hydride target which also contains deuterium, tritium or a mixture of these isotopes. Fusion of deuterium atoms (D + D) results in the formation of a He-3 ion and a neutron with a kinetic energy of approximately 2.5 MeV. Fusion of a deuterium and a tritium atom (D + T) results in the formation of a He-4 ion and a neutron with a kinetic energy of approximately 14.1 MeV. Neutron generators have applications in medicine, security, and materials analysis.
...
The central part of a neutron generator is the particle accelerator itself, sometimes called a neutron tube. Neutron tubes have several components including an ion source, ion optic elements, and a beam target; all of these are enclosed within a vacuum-tight enclosure. High voltage insulation between the ion optical elements of the tube is provided by glass and/or ceramic insulators. The neutron tube is, in turn, enclosed in a metal housing, the accelerator head, which is filled with a dielectric medium to insulate the high voltage elements of the tube from the operating area. The accelerator and ion source high voltages are provided by external power supplies. The control console allows the operator to adjust the operating parameters of the neutron tube. The power supplies and control equipment are normally located within 10–30 feet of the accelerator head in laboratory instruments, but may be several kilometers away in well logging instruments.

In comparison with their predecessors, sealed neutron tubes do not require vacuum pumps and gas sources for operation. They are therefore more mobile and compact, while also durable and reliable. For example, sealed neutron tubes have replaced radioactive neutron initiators, in supplying a pulse of neutrons to the imploding core of modern nuclear weapons.
Cs-137 on the other hand has a half-life of 30 years, so in an RTG role one can simply use an initial quantity several times more than needed for the power requirements ... the expected lifetimes of the various other components would likely limit the overall design life to something under a century, anyway. Do we want hundreds or thousands of these things deployed in remote locations? Obviously not. One more reason it might not have been such a great idea for the neocon foreign policies of both the Rs and Ds in DC to go out of their way to make Russia an enemy following the breakup of the Soviet Union. But the MISC (military-industrial-surveillance complex) loves itself a "big platform enemy" - they didn't want to demonize China in that role because the captains of U.S. industry - including those in the MIC - were busy shipping their manufacturing there in search of windfall profits.

Lastly, speaking of RTGs in remote locations:
Quote:
A common RTG application is spacecraft power supply. Systems for Nuclear Auxiliary Power (SNAP) units were used for probes that traveled far from the Sun rendering solar panels impractical. As such, they were used with Pioneer 10, Pioneer 11, Voyager 1, Voyager 2, Galileo, Ulysses, Cassini, New Horizons and the Mars Science Laboratory. RTGs were used to power the two Viking landers and for the scientific experiments left on the Moon by the crews of Apollo 12 through 17 (SNAP 27s). Because the Apollo 13 moon landing was aborted, its RTG rests in the South Pacific Ocean, in the vicinity of the Tonga Trench.
More on the Apollo 13 RTG, from a 2014 article:
Quote:
Somewhere among the jagged trenches of the South Pacific sits a graphite fuel cask containing 3.9 kg of plutonium from Apollo 13. The fate of the radioactive plutonium-238 has long been overshadowed by the successful return of the three NASA astronauts on board the ill-fated mission.

The plutonium was supposed to fuel the System for Nuclear Auxiliary Power, or SNAP-27 Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG), designed to power a set of experiments on the lunar surface. But after an explosion crippled the craft and forced the crew to abandon plans of a lunar landing, the plutonium became yet another problem for mission control. Officials from NASA confidently told The New York Times that the biggest risk was that the 40-pound generator might hit someone when it fell to Earth. “It will keep a few fish warm,” a NASA official said. The Atomic Energy Commission, on the other hand, conceded the slight possibility that it could become ground into dust and dispersed.

NASA learned its lessons about engineering the fuel casks the hard way: in 1964, the Transit-5-BN mission aborted and the RTG burned up upon reentry above Madagascar, in keeping with its design. Traces of plutonium were found in the area months later. In 1968, the Nimbus B-1 weather satellite was aborted soon after takeoff from Vandenberg Air Force Base and the plutonium from the SNAP-19B2 RTG plunged into 300 feet of water off the California coast, with no release of radiation.

Apollo 13’s SNAP-27 fuel, as far as we know, slipped beneath the waves and came to rest 6 to 9 kilometers deep in the Tonga Trench, one of the deepest areas in the ocean. Subsequent testing by the U.S. Department of Energy has shown no spike in background radiation. Not surprisingly, NASA has no desire to go looking for the small cask, even with advances in submersible technology that would make such a mission at least technically feasible. “I don’t think that anyone has seriously considered that because of the cost of recovery,” said Leonard Dudzinski, a NASA program executive who deals with radioisotope power systems.

Indeed, NASA is trying to source additional plutonium 238 for its future deep space missions – the U.S. no longer produces the isotope and Russia has proved to be an unreliable source – but the useful life of the Apollo 13’s plutonium has expired. The plutonium poses little danger to the environment: the corrosion resistant cladding should withstand seawater for approximately 870 years, ten times the plutonium’s half life. According to NASA, the plutonium itself was in oxide form and was both chemically and biologically inert when it plunged into the ocean.
The kind of design considerations described in the last paragraph would presumably also apply to RTGs based on other isotopes such as Cs-137.

Update: Here is an article addressing the "why liquid-fueled ICBMs?" angle:

Why did Russia opt for liquid-fuel in its next generation ICBMs? | RUSI

Last fiddled with by ewmayer on 2019-08-27 at 22:33
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Old 2019-08-27, 23:44   #173
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Quote:
Update: Here is an article addressing the "why liquid-fueled ICBMs?" angle:

Why did Russia opt for liquid-fuel in its next generation ICBMs? | RUSI
Wow.That kind of analysis is hard to come by. I read in some pretty diverse places, but I can't remember anything quite that dispassionate in proposing what Russia's nuclear strategic motivations might be, how they might pursue them, and why.
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Old 2019-08-28, 01:49   #174
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I have no idea what would happen if you replaced tritium with a mixture of tritium and helium-3 (which tritium beta-decays into), so I am unable to assess whether the plausible-sounding idea of "upping the dosage" over time is actually credible.

I dispute the notion that the deterrent value of a ballistic missile depends on "megatonnage" of yield. A fission bomb can be made quite "dirty." The idea of a "cobalt bomb," specifically conceived to enhance "nuclear fallout" over a wide area, and presented as a "doomsday weapon," has been around since 1950.

And, in fact, one of the "doomsday weapons" touted by the Russian Federation in March 2018 was "Poseidon," an autonomous "cobalt bomb" delivered by drone, to wipe out US Navy carrier battle groups. Whether this particular system is actually more than a bluff, is open to debate. But the fact remains, those benevolent, teddy-bear Russians have pronounced themselves willing to use such a thing. Why not, then, missile-delivered "dirty nukes" designed to turn US cities into radiological no-go areas?

One of the engineering questions of "autonomous" ballistic missiles lying in wait at the bottom of the ocean is, just how deep could the protective container be put? Submarine based ballistic missiles aren't fired from very deep, as best I can tell. (BTW Russia has, since the accident under current discussion, announced the launch of two submarine-based ballistic missiles in the arctic ocean). If these "doomsday weapons" have to be placed in fairly shallow water, they might be detected, or one inadvertently picked up by, say, a bottom trawler. Now that would be a catch of the day to talk about!
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Old 2019-09-12, 18:10   #175
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Originally Posted by kladner View Post
These references to the Napoleonic debacle call up a much-loved Schumann lieder for me. Note the French Anthem at the climax. It was amusing, in my family, to hear Napoleon referred to as the Kaiser, though this is, after all, the Emperor.
A detail in this song has been lurking in my mind for its extremity of Romance. For starters, these two soldiers have already walked across a goodly part of Russia and in today's terms, theoretically, all of Belarus and Poland. Now they are at the (presumed) Eastern border of Germany. At this point one of them feels close to death and makes one little request:
‘Grant me, brother, one request,
If I am now to die.
Take my corpse with you to France;
Bury me in French soil.
Translation: "Be a good fellow and somehow drag my rotting carcass across Germany with you, so that my dead, putrid meat can be buried in France. Oh, and by the way, you have to carry my musket and sword, too. Do it for the Emperor. No biggy. You work out the details."

Last fiddled with by kladner on 2019-09-12 at 18:11
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Old 2020-01-23, 21:17   #176
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It is 100 seconds to midnight.
Quote:
To: Leaders and citizens of the world
Re: Closer than ever: It is 100 seconds to midnight
Date: January 23, 2020


Humanity continues to face two simultaneous existential dangers—nuclear war and climate change—that are compounded by a threat multiplier, cyber-enabled information warfare, that undercuts society’s ability to respond. The international security situation is dire, not just because these threats exist, but because world leaders have allowed the international political infrastructure for managing them to erode.
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