British hydrogen bomb programme
The British hydrogen bomb programme was the ultimately successful British effort to develop hydrogen bombs between 1952 and 1958. The successful development of the hydrogen bomb, along with the Sputnik crisis, resulted in the 1958 US–UK Mutual Defence Agreement. The neutron was discovered by James Chadwick at the Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge in February 1932.
About British hydrogen bomb programme in brief
The British hydrogen bomb programme was the ultimately successful British effort to develop hydrogen bombs between 1952 and 1958. During the early part of the Second World War, Britain had a nuclear weapons project, codenamed Tube Alloys. The successful development of the hydrogen bomb, along with the Sputnik crisis, resulted in the 1958 US–UK Mutual Defence Agreement, in which the nuclear Special Relationship was restored. The neutron was discovered by James Chadwick at the Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge in February 1932. In April 1932, his Cavendish colleagues John Cockcroft and Ernest Walton split lithium atoms with accelerated protons. The discovery of fission raised the possibility that an extremely powerful atomic bomb could be created. In July 1940, Britain offered the United States access to its scientific research, and American scientists briefed British scientists on British nuclear developments. He discovered that the British S1 was smaller than the American S1-1, which was known as the S-1 bomb. The British government resumed its own development effort which was codenaming \”High Explosive Research\”. The successful nuclear test of a British atomic bomb in Operation Hurricane in October 1952 represented an extraordinary scientific and technological achievement. The first series of Operation Grapple tests involved Britain’s first airdrop of a thermonuclear bomb. In the Grappl X test in November 1957, they successfully tested a therMonuclear design. The Grappled Y test the following April obtained most of its yield from nuclear fusion, and theGrapple Z test series later that year demonstrated a mastery of thermon nuclear weapons technology.
An international moratorium on nuclear tests commenced on 31 October 1958, and Britain ceased atmospheric testing for good. The first test of the Green Granite design was a failure. The second test validated Orange Herald as a usable design of a megaton weapon, but it was not a true thermonnuclear bomb. A third test attempted to correct the Greengranite design, but was another failure. In July 1954, Cabinet agreed to proceed with the development of ther monuclear weapons. The third test was a success at the time, although hailed as a success at the time. The fourth and final test was the first to validate the Orange Herald design of the megaton bomb, but the core boosting did not work. In December 1938, Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassmann at Hahn’s laboratory in Berlin-Dahlem bombarded uranium with slow neutrons, and discovered that barium had been produced, and therefore that the uranium nucleus had been split. Hahn wrote to his colleague Lise Meitner, who, with her nephew Otto Robert Frisch, developed a theoretical explanation of the process. By analogy with the division of biological cells, they named the process ‘fission’. The critical mass of a metallic sphere of pure uranium was 1,235 kilograms, and would explode with the power of thousands of tons of dynamite. Instead of tons, as everyone had assumed, as little had assumed.