The first nuclear explosion, named "Trinity", was detonated July 16, 1945. Main article: History of nuclear weapons During the 1930s, innovations in physics made it apparent that it could be possible to develop nuclear weapons of incredible power using nuclear reactions.
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The Nuclear Age Begins
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The post-war relations between the two, which had already been deteriorating, began to rapidly disintegrate. Soon the two were locked in a massive stockpiling of nuclear weapons. The United States began a crash-program to develop the first hydrogen bomb in 1950, and detonated its first thermonuclear weapon in 1952. This new weapon was alone over 400 times as powerful as the weapons used against Japan. The Soviet Union detonated a primitive thermonuclear weapon in 1953 and a full-fledged one in 1955.Nuclear missiles and computerized launch systems increased the range and scope of possible nuclear war. The conflict continued to escalate, with the major superpowers developing long-range missiles (such as the ICBM) and a nuclear strategy which guaranteed that any use of the nuclear weapons would be suicide for the attacking nation (Mutually Assured Destruction).
The creation of early warning systems put the control of these weapons into the hands of newly created computers, and they served as a tense backdrop throughout the Cold War.Since the 1940s there were concerns about the rising proliferation of nuclear weapons to new countries, which was seen as being destabilizing to international relations, spurring regional arms races, and generally increasing the likelihood of some form of nuclear war. Eventually, seven nations would overtly develop nuclear weapons, and still maintain stockpiles today: the United States, the Soviet Union (and later Russia would inherit these), the United Kingdom, France, China, India, and Pakistan.South Africa developed six crude weapons in the 1980s (which it later dismantled), and Israel almost certainly developed nuclear weapons though it never confirmed nor denied it
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