Valerie Hu
Why dirty bomb? In some American T.V.series people usually call a nuclear bomb a DIRTY bomb. I'd like to know why.Thank you.
Aug 18, 2014 1:36 PM
Answers · 7
It's a dirty bomb because the radiation contaminates a large area, not just the immediate area of the detonation.
August 18, 2014
A nuclear bomb uses nuclear energy as fuel for the detonation, and this happens in both the fission (A) and the fusion (H) kinds of bombs. Making a nuclear bomb detonate and at the same time use a good part of its fuel is quite a complex physics and and engineering problem. On the other hand a 'dirty bomb' uses conventional explosives (i.e. chemical) for the detonation, and includes various amounts of various radioactive materials to that will be spread by the chemical explosion over a large area where human life would be banned for some time (it could even a very, very long time). Anyone who can build chemiocal bombs and have access to radioactive materials could produce a 'dirty bomb' that has as it aim to produce pollution. On the side of strategy, an enemy that intends the conquer of an area would not use a 'dirty bomb' against the popolations in that area, but an enemy whose aim is to produce the bigger damage with the lower cost could device such (awful) plans; this is the typical context of terrorism.
August 18, 2014
A "dirty bomb" is a regular explosive bomb that includes a bit of radioactive material (which makes it "dirty"). Nuclear bombs are complex devices, whereas a dirty bomb is something that can be "homemade" and is designed to scare and terrorize people and be costly to clean up, rather than cause death by radiation poisoning. See:
August 18, 2014
This is something you can look up. The Chinese wikipedia uses 髒彈. Would that be clearer?
August 18, 2014
"Dirty bombs" are the opposite of "clean bombs." In the 1950s, both the United States and the Soviet Union performed "atmospheric" tests. They exploded bombs aboveground. The bombs produced large quantities of dangerous radioactive dust, "fallout". The radioactive pollution from these tests could be measured all over the world. There was an effort to develop "clean bombs." Clean bombs would have all of the horrific effects of nuclear weapons--but less fallout. It all sounds insane now. Actually it sounded insane even then. S,o a "clean bomb" is one that produces as little fallout as possible. People began to worry about the possibility of terrorists using nuclear weapons. Even if terrorists could not produce a nuclear chain reaction, they could use radioactive materials strictly as a kind of poison. So, a "dirty bomb" means one that is intentionally designed to spread as much radioactive dust as possible. It might not even be a nuclear bomb. It might just be conventional explosive designed to spread radioactive dust.
August 18, 2014
Show more
Still haven’t found your answers?
Write down your questions and let the native speakers help you!