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Suitcase Nuke 5,000 Ft. High

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posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 02:16 PM
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If someone with knowledge of the effects could answer this it would be appreciated.
Speculation also welcome.


If a suitcase nuke were to be detonated say 5000 feet above the ground what would be the damage besides fallout?

Lets say If terorist were to steal a helicopter and blow up a suitcase nuke over a city or major stadium event would that cause mass deaths?

Let me edit my reason for this question.

My brother just called me and said really good seats for tonights Miami/Jets game became available but the other night I had a strange dream about Monday night football so I am wondering if I should go.


Guess I'm a bit paranoid being so close to tomorrow.


[edit on 1-11-2004 by evecasino]




posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 02:27 PM
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As far as I am aware, detonating a suitcase nuke at that height would create very little damage.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 02:34 PM
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A good place to start learning about nuclear blast dynamics is here:

www.fas.org...

5,000 feet is probably a bit high for the yield of a "suitcase nuke" (never have seen one, but everybody says the former Soviets are giving them away with a free tank of gas). It also depends on what kind of damage you would like to incur.

p.s. Go to the game, its under restricted airspace.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 02:56 PM
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First of all a nuke detonation for example 5,000 ft in the air would minimize structural damage to a smaller area, for example hiroshema/ and nagasaki were detonated 300 to 400 feet above ground and they where larger devices and caused the following effects (bottom of post), which you will find a greatly larger then the compacity of a suitcase nuke. It is believed the fall out would cause the most damage.

By this I mean the EMP and radiation. With nothing to block its travel path and in 2 directions down and outwards the effective range of these two forms of fall out given the weather conditions could carry the radiation for atleast 5 times the distance.

On this site about half way down the page you find a yield calculator to better help you figure the power of you theoretical device.

Nuke/Atom Bomb Yield Japan


Atom Bomb Attacks
Data from the US Strategic Bombing Survey, Japanese official counts, and U.S. government / military documents assessing the damage caused by these weapons.

Target Hiroshima
Dead/Missing 70,000-80,000
Wounded 70,000
Population Density 35,000 per sq mile
Total Casualties 140,000-150,000
Area Destroyed 4.7 sq mile
Attacking Platform 1 B-29
Weapon(s) 'Tall Boy' 15 kT (15,000 tons of TNT)

Atom Bomb Attacks
Data from the US Strategic Bombing Survey, Japanese official counts, and U.S. government / military documents assessing the damage caused by these weapons.
Target Nagasaki
Attacks on Cities
Dead/Missing 35,000-40,000
Wounded 40,000
Population Density 65,000 per sq mile
Total Casualties 75,000-80,000
Area Destroyed 1.8 sq mile
Attacking Platform 1 B-29
Weapon(s) ''Fat Man' 21 kT (21,000 tons of TNT)



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 03:23 PM
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Originally posted by drbryankkruta
First of all a nuke detonation for example 5,000 ft in the air would minimize structural damage to a smaller area, for example hiroshema/ and nagasaki were detonated 300 to 400 feet above ground and they where larger devices and caused the following effects (bottom of post), which you will find a greatly larger then the compacity of a suitcase nuke. It is believed the fall out would cause the most damage.

Nuke/Atom Bomb Yield Japan
Weapon(s) 'Tall Boy' 15 kT (15,000 tons of TNT)



From your own source:


The part the "dr" didn't read
At 1,800 ft, the barometric pressure device triggered the detonating mechanism. In a few milliseconds a brief flash had become an engulfing ball of light and destructive energy.


And it's "Little Boy" not "Tall Boy", you're confusing an American nuclear weapon with a British conventional weapon.

p.s. What is “compacity”?



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 03:35 PM
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Think of a nuclear blast like a big ball whose center is the bomb itself. The ball (or blast zone) will radiate out from the center nearly infinitely. As the ball is inflated (blast reaction occurs) the force of impact is reduced as the ball expands. The question then becomes...what is the fatal blast radius of the device. If the radius is 5000 feet, then you'd probably want to detonate the device at some height above 0, but less than 5000 feet to achieve maximum damage. There's probably a calculation that accounts for the dissipation of explosive force and applies a formula to a device's blast radius to determine the target altitude for a detonation ensuring maximum damage, but you get the idea.

Even if the blast radius of a suitcase nuke was a mile, you wouldn't want it to detonate at that altitude because a large part of the force (image a plane parallel to the ground intersecting the device and spreading out from there) would just shoot outward and upward. You'd want the detonation point to be lower so that all force from the bottom hemisphere of the device and a good portion of that from the top is inflicted on the target area.

Make sense?

Now, if you are talking about a dirty bomb, higher can be better because you will end up with a wider area of radiological dissipation, but too high and the winds will just carry your cloud away.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 03:47 PM
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Thanks for the replies.


Originally posted by Mirthful Me

p.s. Go to the game, its under restricted airspace.




LOL! It's in the flight path of Newark Airport.

When I went to a concert a few years ago there were planes constantly flying over.
When I went to a recent concert at Continental Arena it was the same thing.

Even if the space was restricted I'm sure if terrorist wanted they could pull a Bell copter out from a garage in Jersey City and have it over the stadium in under 5 minutes.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 03:53 PM
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You've been watchin too much 24, season 2 final episode!



although the threat does exsists more today



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 03:55 PM
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Originally posted by Mirthful Me
From your own source:


The part the "dr" didn't read
At 1,800 ft, the barometric pressure device triggered the detonating mechanism. In a few milliseconds a brief flash had become an engulfing ball of light and destructive energy.


First of all its been a while since I used this info so yes I made an error in detonation height, I just provided a handy link I already had, Second of all take your own advise the errors in the bomb names were copy pasted as written if their are any.....I have always known these two devices as little boy and fat man myself from history channel biographies.



And it's "Little Boy" not "Tall Boy", you're confusing an American nuclear weapon with a British conventional weapon.


Read above about names, now third this is a close approximation I was trying to find an example close enough to help, I know the differnce between atom and nuclear payloads.



p.s. What is “compacity”?


Finally I'm just woke up and didn't set here and spell check the whole thing, and am still not now. But I didnt come here to a spelling or gramatic lesson, Im here to enjoy a conversation. Im not here for your approval school teacher. I am here for enjoyment, this is not a research project just a what if situation anyway so please back off.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 03:58 PM
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Originally posted by chaosrain
you'd probably want to detonate the device at some height above 0, but less than 5000 feet to achieve maximum damage.

you wouldn't want it to detonate at that altitude because a large part of the force (image a plane parallel to the ground intersecting the device and spreading out from there) would just shoot outward and upward.

You'd want the detonation point to be lower so that all force from the bottom hemisphere of the device and a good portion of that from the top is inflicted on the target area.

Make sense?

the winds will just carry your cloud away.


LOL! Thanks. You answered it like as I said I want to blow up something.

I like The Bomb instead of your bomb.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 04:06 PM
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Now again to the author of the thread. In absence of perfect polly, This was meant as a worse case situation based on a larger device. THAT IS WHY (mirthful me) I provided the info where in you can find a yeild calculator on this page provided.

It is just fill and click so enter your own figures, but to be fair to perfect poly the yeild will be differnt based on conditions like

Height , construction, materials used, weather patterns, and the structure of the craft carrying it. However I would scale back the yeild figures from the ones provided for little boy and fat man.

I am sorry if the information provided was not exact, but then again you asked for speculative figures something else perfect polly missed.


READ THE QUESTION POLLY PERFECT

[edit on 1/11/2004 by drbryankkruta]



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 04:42 PM
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Originally posted by drbryankkruta
READ THE QUESTION POLLY PERFECT


Not perfect, merely literate. Rather than spend countless hours deconstructing the combined "works" of the "dr", or resorting to sophomoric vitriol bolstered by some inane name calling.

I missed nothing, my post referenced the standard blast effects relevant to the type of delivery (high altitude, air, surface, subsurface) for EC's inquiry, air burst was the only viable implementation against a stadium full of people (thereby eliminating any potential cover for the target, and your variables with it). It would also be prudent to examine the yield potentials for such a “compact device”, from 10 tons to 1 kiloton (extremely small in the wonderful world of nuclear devices). The other aspect is weapon reliability, the only devices that have been thoroughly tested and maintained are in the hands of the U.S. DOE (and all are accounted for as best we know), Soviet era devices, are an unknown quantity, and anything spirited away probably hasn’t received the necessary maintenance to ensure reliability (this may be why one hasn’t been “used yet”). The Tom Clancy pipedream of remanufacturing a device (from some fortuitous stroke of luck like digging up a device in Aunty May’s flower garden) is just that, it takes too much (resources, skill and expertise, intellect) for a government to do, much less a band of terrorist. The truth is anyone can slap together a device given enough fissile material and a disregard for their own health, but it will be the size of a Buick, an old Buick (and probably just as reliable). The conclusion is look to the sea for the insertion of a device aimed at America, not the air.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 04:48 PM
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Originally posted by syntaxer
You've been watchin too much 24, season 2 final episode!



although the threat does exsists more today


I have no idea what 24 is??????

Decided not to go anyway so. Miami will lose so whats the sense of going to a game and being disappointed?



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 05:01 PM
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Originally posted by evecasino
I like The Bomb instead of your bomb.


Sorry if I painted you as a terrorist there. I should have said "If it were me" or something to deflect a bit there. Of course, I don't have a suitcase nuke on me or anything, but you get the idea.

(Considering the ability of nuclear scientists to 'fingerprint' radiological fallout from a nuclear weapon to determine it's reactor of origin, they are of very little tactical benefit. The purpose of a nuke without a projectile-based delivery system is confusion not annihilation...the confusion as to who is really attacking gets cleared up pretty quickly after fallout analysis.)

Strangely, you pointed out a tendency of mine. When talking about terrorist attacks I usually use the pronoun 'you' on purpose. I think it's important for folks to realize that terrorists are, by no means, supermen. They're just average folks who are unusually dedicated to harming others. If revolutionary times were ever to begin again, many common people would find themselves labled as terrorists as they endeavor to undermine or overthrow the establishment.

As I am sure many Americans have dreamt up ways the US could be attacked in the future in an exercise of self-generating fear and worry, those dreamt up plans are the same types of plans that were used against the British in the 1700's, US soldiers in Iraq, and commuters in Spain. In the same way that I don't I imagine a bloody coup is in the near future for the US, I'm sure that back in January of 2003 Iraqi's weren't taking IED classes in the evening at their local community college. Terrorism and insurgency is simply asymmetrical warfare conducted by commoners against a better trained, better equipped enemy.

Many condem terrorists without realizing that they would behave identically if their own freedom was at stake.

Sorry so rambling and off topic...



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 05:09 PM
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Originally posted by chaosrain

Originally posted by evecasino
I like The Bomb instead of your bomb.


Many condem terrorists without realizing that they would behave identically if their own freedom was at stake.

Sorry so rambling and off topic...


Point well taken.


I for sure enjoy my freedom and am tired of all the terror BS.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 05:55 PM
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MODERATORS NOTE I wish to say that I'm going to reply to this response and then leave, as I do not want to damage the thread more than it has.

SO PLEASE do not shut down this thread I respect the authurs of threads enough not to be the cause of the actions taken when this stuff happens.


Now , Having said that.


Originally posted by Mirthful Me
Not perfect, merely literate. Rather than spend countless hours deconstructing the combined "works" of the "dr", or resorting to sophomoric vitriol bolstered by some inane name calling.



1) I am 32 years old mirthful me, and this young in life I have achieved 4 degrees, including my Doctorate. So I will not submit to your prissy attitude any further. I got my first degree at 18 so you deconstruction crap doesn't bother me, I am subject to errors just a much as you are, and if you think your above mistakes then I would say to you, Last time I checked God's name was not mirthful me.

2) My Doctorate as your so proud of yourself for questioning, and degradating in your blasts towards me is not in Nuclear Science, It is in an even more important area to me, so get off the high horse.


3) I was "speculating" as in the thread authors post, and as such I didnt think I had to go out and blow a nuke at 5000 feet to have enough information to satisfy you. This was a friendly input which was in no means
meant to meet you factual standards I was having a funny conversation and not even with you.

4) I didn't have all the detail;s in my head so I quoted from this site by , cutting and pasting so before you blame me for screwing up a fact first find out if I even said it in the first place, ask me don't assume that I need to be corrected.

5) The condescending attitude, you put out in the use of fancy words and I know more than you fact quotation, is at the very best humorous to me.
I am not a nuke maker, and have no plans to be, but you seem to think that I must be one to provide a hypothesis or to speculation. So you pointing out information the way you did, did not impress me.

6) What is wrong more than anything is you lost the ability to understand casual conversation is imperfect yet a major part of this board. So as such I don't correct people in the common area, if I want to be corrective I will participate in a Research Project thread where it is both required and needed to come to a true and factual conclusion, This is why those places are invitation based in their participation. So relax you are no better than I am and I'm no better than you or anyone else, Im stumbeling through the existance we have all been given in the most relaxed and entertaining manor possible, with only God , Family as my major concerns.


7) how does a person enjoy the conversation if they play english professor all the time, or science teacher. just go with the flow and dont worry about things and you will both be liked better and like others better.


Well that's it MODS, I will leave now, sorry for the trouble.....Its kinda upsetting that I could not even respond to people who had something posted and I wanted to learn more about. However the concern of systimatic editing suggestions by a heckler from the crowd who probably has made mistakes in commenting about things which fall in my field of training yet I would not criticise them in the matter of something so petty as spelling keeps me from staying in order to find something more loose collar to join in on.


PLEASE DONT CLOSE THE THREAD OVER THIS< I AM LEAVING SO THE PROBLEM SHOULD STOP atleast till a new victim is found saying something
this person doesnt think is spelled right , or quoted right despite the fact the information was provided by another and not the person quoting.



posted on Nov, 1 2004 @ 09:51 PM
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If the threat is nuclear, we're essentially talking about three different scenarios:

(1) In theater deployment of strategic nuclear weapons: missles, rockets, ICBM's [not likely]

(2) Strategic placement of crudely assembled dirty bombs, which when triggered blast apart chunks of radioactive material, rather than fissioning them off for a bigger explosion [possible]

and, the kicker...

(3) Small Atomic Demolition Munition-class devices, such as Backpack bombs and suitcase bombs (the SADM is a Backpack bomb).

Let's discuss:

SUITCASE NUCLEAR WEAPON:

Both the Soviet Union and the United States employed variations of the suitcase nuclear weapon. To be precise, not many details of these devices are known specifically. However, it was evident that these devices were in existence, due to the many media reports covering government sources in both sides claiming the existence of these.

-> Possible yield: 5T - 2KT
-> Likely yield: .005-1KT
-> Blast radius: (see below)
-> Likely Targets: Soft personnel targets
-> Number in existence: 100 worldwide


BACKPACK NUCLEAR WEAPON:

These are the worrisome weapons. To be clear, they are truly backpack in size. The MK-54 SADM (details here) is a nifty piece of engineering. The US (and supposedly the Russians did something similar) simply converted some of their nuclear warhead stock into man-portable nuclear 'demolitions'. The specific method of employment was not that different from a strategic demolition that a SEAL team might be tasked with. In fact (thanks to our friends at the Department of Energy), here is a video showing a Navy SEAL suiting up with one of these.

-> Possible yield: 10T - 1KT
-> Likely yield: 10T - 1KT
-> Blast Radius: (see below)
-> Number in existence: ~600 worldwide

More backpack bomb pictures: modern, old (50's, 60's)


It's the backpack bombs I worry about. These devices are easily deployed by one person, and can be assembled and detonated within 5 minutes of reaching a target zone.

Here are some rudimentary calculations (plaguerized from the web, thanks Vint Cerf):

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Theoretically the detonation Of a 1 kt device has the following results.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

for an airburst with negligible FallOut:0.0045 secs after detonation the FireBall reaches Breakaway and 220 Feet in diameter.
0.6000 secs after detonation the FireBall reaches Maximum Size 440 Feet in diameter.
for a Ground burst0.0060 secs after detonation the FireBall reaches Breakaway and 293 Feet in diameter.
0.8000 secs after detonation the FireBall reaches Maximum Size 587 Feet in diameter.
Crater dimensions are:Width 260 Feet, the lip extending another 70 Feet.
Apparent Crater Depth is 30 Feet. Buildup Of ejecta over original surface is 8 Feet.
volume Of Crater is 597289.1 cubic Feet.(About 1.371 AcreFeet,or 0.00000406 cubic Miles.) Nice Lake.

HOB 200 psi 15 psi 10 psi 8 psi 6 psi 4 psi 2 psi 1 psi
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1 Feet 200 Feet 820 Feet 1020 Feet 1150 Feet 1350 Feet 1650 Feet 2500 Feet 3800 Feet
0.0400 secs 0.3000 secs 0.4300 secs 0.5000 secs 0.6000 secs 0.9000 secs 1.600 secs 2.900 secs
200 Feet 250 Feet 880 Feet 1111 Feet 1200 Feet 1500 Feet 1800 Feet 3000 Feet 4500 Feet
0.0700 secs 0.3500 secs 0.5000 secs 0.5800 secs 0.8000 secs 1.100 secs 2.000 secs 3.400 secs
500 Feet 1100 Feet 1310 Feet 1350 Feet 1700 Feet 2200 Feet 3500 Feet 4900 Feet
0.5500 secs 0.8000 secs 0.8000 secs 1.000 secs 1.500 secs 2.500 secs 3.400 secs
1000 Feet 300 Feet 760 Feet 1500 Feet 2000 Feet 2700 Feet 4200 Feet 1.2 Mile
0.5000 secs 0.7000 secs 1.100 secs 1.500 secs 2.200 secs 3.300 secs 5.000 secs
1500 Feet 750 Feet 1500 Feet 3200 Feet 1.4 Mile
1.000 secs 1.400 secs 2.600 secs 6.500 secs
2000 Feet 500 Feet 2600 Feet 1.5 Mile
1.300 secs 2.400 secs 6.500 secs

Distances for Thermal and Gamma/Xray Radiation
HOB 500 Rads 1000 Rads 12 Cal/cm) 8 Cal/cm 5 cal/cm
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1 Feet A: 640 Feet B: 100 Feet C: 600 Feet D: 900 Feet E: 500 Feet A
istance To 500 rads prompt radiation
200 Feet A: 630 Feet B: 90 Feet C: 580 Feet D: 880 Feet E: 490 Feet B
istance To 1000 rads prompt radiation
500 Feet A: 590 Feet B: 40 Feet C: 520 Feet D: 830 Feet E: 440 Feet C
istance To ignition Of Fires (12 cal/sq cm).
1000 Feet A: 440 Feet B: 840 Feet C: 240 Feet D: 610 Feet E: 290 Feet D
istance To 3rd degree burns (8 cal/sq cm).
1500 Feet A: 170 Feet B: 470 Feet C: 57 Feet D: 160 Feet - E
istance To 2nd degree burns (5 cal/sq cm).
2000 Feet A: 720 Feet B: 40 Feet - - E: 500 Feet

Assuming average winds Of 15 mph in One direction, ideal fallout patterns are ellipses Of these dimensions:
Initial dosage Distance from Ground Zero Maximum Width Contaminated Wait To decay To "Safe"
Rate (rad/hr) GZ downwind (GZ)radius (Crosswind) Area (Sq Miles) Level Of 0.25 rad/hr
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3000 0.9500 Mi. 0.0260 Mi. 0.0076 Mi. 0.0233 Mi. 2500 Hr ( 3 months,2 Weeks).
1000 0.8000 Mi. 0.0600 Mi. 0.0360 Mi. 0.0205 Mi. 1000 Hr ( 6 Weeks.)
300 4.4990 Mi. 0.2000 Mi. 0.1300 Mi. 0.1122 Mi. 370 Hr (15 days.)
100 8.9000 Mi. 0.3900 Mi. 0.3600 Mi. 0.2218 Mi. 150 Hr (6 days,6 hours).
30 16.0000 Mi. 0.5299 Mi. 0.7600 Mi. 0.3945 Mi. 54 Hr (two days)
10 24.0000 Mi. 0.6800 Mi. 1.4000 Mi. 0.5892 Mi. 22 Hr
3 30.0000 Mi. 0.8900 Mi. 2.1990 Mi. 0.7374 Mi. 8 Hr
1 40.0000 Mi. 1.5000 Mi. 3.3000 Mi. 0.9908 Mi. 3 Hr

And here are some cool pictures of (if this were detonated in a downtown environment), what you mind find laying about many days later when you could actually inspect the target site (please remember to bring your lead suit). This is 'trinitite', or the remnants of desert sand (silica) that was raised to several millions degrees F in a few microseconds in the first nuclear detonation ever by human kind, the Trinity explosion at the Alamagordo, NM test site. cool.

This is the base of the 100FT several hundred ton steel tower that held the trinity shot cab. Wow!



All in all- nukes suck. They're pretty much the last resort of a desperate mind. I'd much prefer slow death by anthrax poisoning rather than instand char-broiling and DNA-scrambling by the Plutonium avenger.


As a final note - to the original poster - a suitbase/backpack nuke detonated at 5000 feet would probably irradiate those in the stadium and spread fallout throughout a city. We're talking 10,000 dying in the first several days.



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