History Main / ArtisticLicenseNuclearPhysics

17th Jun '16 9:43:45 PM Doug86
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* ''Tales of Suspense #49'': At a nuclear bomb test at Stark's nuclear weapons plant, "A highly-refined nuclear explosion takes place, dangerously close to Iron Man and The Angel!!" Luckily, Iron Man is protected by his "heavily-insulated flexible metal costume", which allows him to "withstand the tremendous shock of the explosion without suffering any lasting ill effects." But Angel, "wearing no such protective clothing, receives the brunt of the radioactivity"; suddenly, the radiation turns the Angel's personality to evil!
* The third, fusion-powered version of Comicbook/{{Starman}} for DCComics fought a phasing opponent who used a Cadmium dagger (cadmium being used to dampen nuclear reactions in fission reactors sometimes) in an attempt to neutralize Starman's powers because 'well you're powered by nuclear energy!'. Which got him a 'you're an idiot!' moment from Starman as he rightly points out that his being transformed into a solar-powered being like the sun meant he ran on fusion and not fission reactions.
* Dan Jurgen's ''[[ComicBook/TheMightyThor Thor]]'': ''Thor #51'' has Thor magically contain the explosive blast from a nuclear missile strike, with no hint of any radiation escaping into the atmosphere. In Asgard, a nuclear bomb detonates in ''Thor #66-67'': Thor survives without carrying around radiation, and Asgard does not stay a nuclear wasteland.

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* ''Tales of Suspense #49'': Suspense'' #49: At a nuclear bomb test at Stark's nuclear weapons plant, "A highly-refined nuclear explosion takes place, dangerously close to Iron Man and The Angel!!" Luckily, Iron Man is protected by his "heavily-insulated flexible metal costume", which allows him to "withstand the tremendous shock of the explosion without suffering any lasting ill effects." But Angel, "wearing no such protective clothing, receives the brunt of the radioactivity"; suddenly, the radiation turns the Angel's personality to evil!
* The third, fusion-powered version of Comicbook/{{Starman}} for DCComics Creator/DCComics fought a phasing opponent who used a Cadmium dagger (cadmium being used to dampen nuclear reactions in fission reactors sometimes) in an attempt to neutralize Starman's powers because 'well you're powered by nuclear energy!'. Which got him a 'you're an idiot!' moment from Starman as he rightly points out that his being transformed into a solar-powered being like the sun meant he ran on fusion and not fission reactions.
* Dan Jurgen's ''[[ComicBook/TheMightyThor Thor]]'': ''Thor #51'' ''Thor'' #51 has Thor magically contain the explosive blast from a nuclear missile strike, with no hint of any radiation escaping into the atmosphere. In Asgard, a nuclear bomb detonates in ''Thor #66-67'': ''Thor'' #66-67: Thor survives without carrying around radiation, and Asgard does not stay a nuclear wasteland.
16th Jun '16 7:58:32 PM nombretomado
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* A minor one: in Marvel Comics' ''ComicBook/TheInfinityGauntlet'', {{Thanos}} at one point mentions having a "thermal nuclear device," rather than a ''thermo''-nuclear device.

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* A minor one: in Marvel Comics' ''ComicBook/TheInfinityGauntlet'', {{Thanos}} ComicBook/{{Thanos}} at one point mentions having a "thermal nuclear device," rather than a ''thermo''-nuclear device.
12th Jun '16 3:18:17 AM Morgenthaler
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** Then there's the ''TreehouseOfHorror'' episode where a nuclear bomb hits Springfield and turns everyone who wasn't killed (or protected by lead based paint) into mutants instantly.

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** Then there's the ''TreehouseOfHorror'' ''WesternAnimation/TreehouseOfHorror'' episode where a nuclear bomb hits Springfield and turns everyone who wasn't killed (or protected by lead based paint) into mutants instantly.
22nd May '16 5:46:25 PM bt8257
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-->--'''[[NotMakingThisUpDisclaimer Literal]] quote from a fact sheet from Greenpeace''', demonstrating why you should check your campaign materials before [[WhatAnIdiot printing and distributing them]].

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-->--'''[[NotMakingThisUpDisclaimer Literal]] quote An actual quote]] from a fact sheet from Greenpeace''', demonstrating why you should check your campaign materials before [[WhatAnIdiot printing and distributing them]].
11th May '16 6:33:43 PM weaponer
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** Though a tokamak-styled fusion reactor can actually explode in a rather spectacular fashion if an unmitigated quench occurs in most of its superconducting magnets due to tremendous amounts of energy stored in them. When you have rapidly heating giant magnets in a pool of liquid helium, expect things to go haywire. Modern particle accelerators deal with quenches quite routinely by detecting them early on and dumping all the stored energy into huge slabs of metal.
11th May '16 5:46:11 PM weaponer
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** Similarly, fictional nuclear reactors will melt down or go up in gigantic nuclear explosions at the slightest thing going wrong. A nuclear reactor simply cannot cause a full-scale nuclear explosion: fuel assemblies are arranged into long, thin columns separated by cladding; the large surface area causes a significant percentage of the available fission neutrons to dissipate into the moderator rather than causing further fission events, preventing a critical mass from forming. A core for a nuclear weapon needs a near-spherical shape for any kind of runaway chain reaction, and depending on size and material may also need a neutron reflector. Anyway, even in the extremely unrealistic scenario when nuclear fuel made of pure metallic weapons-grade uranium or plutonium (something that simply doesn't exist - see below) melts down and forms a perfect sphere of critical mass, it still need one more condition to explode: for this mass to be squeezed into the critical radius, achieved in bombs only under tremendous pressure created by chemical explosives and in a very short (on the order of milliseconds) time window. Otherwise this sphere will simply heat up and boil.

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** Similarly, fictional nuclear reactors will melt down or go up in gigantic nuclear explosions at the slightest thing going wrong. A nuclear reactor simply cannot cause a full-scale nuclear explosion: fuel assemblies are arranged into long, thin columns separated by cladding; the large surface area causes a significant percentage of the available fission neutrons to dissipate into the moderator rather than causing further fission events, preventing a critical mass from forming. A core for a nuclear weapon needs a near-spherical shape for any kind of runaway chain reaction, and depending on size and material may also need a neutron reflector. Anyway, even in the extremely unrealistic scenario when nuclear fuel made of pure metallic weapons-grade uranium or plutonium (something that simply doesn't exist - see below) melts down and forms a perfect sphere of critical mass, it still need needs one more condition to explode: for this mass to be squeezed into the critical radius, achieved in bombs only under tremendous pressure created by chemical explosives and in a very short (on the order of milliseconds) time window. Otherwise this sphere will simply heat up and boil.
boil.
**As a matter of fact, most of the nuclear fuel in the world is NOT metallic. It is based on the metal oxides precisely to prevent it from easily melting or burning. And no matter how hard one tries, it is simply impossible to reach critical radius with oxides.
11th May '16 5:26:55 PM weaponer
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** Similarly, fictional nuclear reactors will melt down or go up in gigantic nuclear explosions at the slightest thing going wrong. A nuclear reactor simply cannot cause a full-scale nuclear explosion: fuel assemblies are arranged into long, thin columns separated by cladding; the large surface area causes a significant percentage of the available fission neutrons to dissipate into the moderator rather than causing further fission events, preventing a critical mass from forming. A core for a nuclear weapon needs a near-spherical shape for any kind of runaway chain reaction, and depending on size and material may also need a neutron reflector.

to:

** Similarly, fictional nuclear reactors will melt down or go up in gigantic nuclear explosions at the slightest thing going wrong. A nuclear reactor simply cannot cause a full-scale nuclear explosion: fuel assemblies are arranged into long, thin columns separated by cladding; the large surface area causes a significant percentage of the available fission neutrons to dissipate into the moderator rather than causing further fission events, preventing a critical mass from forming. A core for a nuclear weapon needs a near-spherical shape for any kind of runaway chain reaction, and depending on size and material may also need a neutron reflector. Anyway, even in the extremely unrealistic scenario when nuclear fuel made of pure metallic weapons-grade uranium or plutonium (something that simply doesn't exist - see below) melts down and forms a perfect sphere of critical mass, it still need one more condition to explode: for this mass to be squeezed into the critical radius, achieved in bombs only under tremendous pressure created by chemical explosives and in a very short (on the order of milliseconds) time window. Otherwise this sphere will simply heat up and boil.



** Despite the common trope of villains (less commonly: the hero) stealing nuclear reactor fuel rods to build weapons out of, in real life, reactor fuel and weapons material are simply not interchangeable. Nuclear weapons require specific isotopes -- uranium-235 or plutonium-239 -- of very high purity (referred to as "weapons grade"), and reactor fuel doesn't even come close. A practical uranium design requires its uranium to be around 80% or more uranium-235, while the fuel in a nuclear reactor consists of just '''3-5'''% uranium-235[[note]]As late as the late 1980s, there were at least a few research reactors still using small amounts of highly enriched uranium sandwiched as thin layers in aluminium plates instead of partially-enriched pellets. Separating U-235 from U-238 is difficult and relies on technologically advanced, incredibly expensive equipment like gas centrifuges; separating U-235 from aluminium just takes someone capable of performing relatively straightforward chemistry. Which is one of the reasons this design is no longer used. The amounts of fuel involved were just on the order of a few kilograms, though.[[/note]]. And while you can relatively easily (assuming you have a fully equipped radiochemical plant) extract plutonium from spent fuel (and some fuels contain plutonium already mixed in), it will be a mixture of isotopes with only a small fraction being plutonium-239. '''Any''' significant admixture of other isotopes will make the plutonium useless or worse for weapons use, and isotope separation is a long, slow, infrastructure-dependent, and energy-intensive operation beyond the reach of most governments, never mind terrorist organisations.

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** Despite the common trope of villains (less commonly: the hero) stealing nuclear reactor fuel rods to build weapons out of, in real life, reactor fuel and weapons material are simply not interchangeable. Nuclear weapons require specific isotopes -- uranium-235 or plutonium-239 -- of very high purity (referred to as "weapons grade"), and reactor fuel doesn't even come close. A practical uranium design requires its uranium to be around 80% or more uranium-235, while the fuel in a civilian nuclear reactor consists of just '''3-5'''% uranium-235[[note]]As uranium-235, and in a submarine reactor up to 20%[[note]]As late as the late 1980s, there were at least a few research reactors still using small amounts of highly enriched uranium sandwiched as thin layers in aluminium plates instead of partially-enriched pellets. Separating U-235 from U-238 is difficult and relies on technologically advanced, incredibly expensive equipment like gas centrifuges; separating U-235 from aluminium just takes someone capable of performing relatively straightforward chemistry. Which is one of the reasons this design is no longer used. The amounts of fuel involved were just on the order of a few kilograms, though.[[/note]]. And while you can relatively easily (assuming you have a fully equipped radiochemical plant) extract plutonium from spent fuel (and some fuels contain plutonium already mixed in), it will be a mixture of isotopes with only a small fraction being plutonium-239. '''Any''' significant admixture of other isotopes will make the plutonium useless or worse for weapons use, and isotope separation is a long, slow, infrastructure-dependent, and energy-intensive operation beyond the reach of most governments, never mind terrorist organisations.
29th Apr '16 4:16:14 PM nombretomado
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* An episode of ''CaptainPlanet'' -- the one with the equally hilarious stand-in for Hitler -- when a nuclear weapon detonates with a mushroom cloud ''in space''.

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* An episode of ''CaptainPlanet'' ''WesternAnimation/{{Captain Planet|and the Planeteers}}'' -- the one with the equally hilarious stand-in for Hitler -- when a nuclear weapon detonates with a mushroom cloud ''in space''.
29th Apr '16 3:05:09 AM Adept
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* Averted and played straight in ''HeavyWeapon''. Attacking the atomic bombs that the [[DemonicSpiders Atomic Bomber]] drop will result in the bomb being destroyed (and not exploding), saving your ass from an otherwise-[[AlwaysAccurateAttack unavoidable]] OneHitKill. However, there is a huge lack of radiation poisoning should any nuke be used.

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* Averted and played straight in ''HeavyWeapon''.''VideoGame/HeavyWeapon''. Attacking the atomic bombs that the [[DemonicSpiders Atomic Bomber]] drop will result in the bomb being destroyed (and not exploding), saving your ass from an otherwise-[[AlwaysAccurateAttack unavoidable]] OneHitKill. However, there is a huge lack of radiation poisoning should any nuke be used.
8th Apr '16 2:55:25 PM CynicalBastardo
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** The ''Opposing Force'' expansion pack has the black ops soldiers bring in a nuclear weapon. Shooting it will detonate it, resulting in a NonStandardGameOver.
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