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Entangled Histories: Climate Science and Nuclear Weapons Research

Harperdog (1754264) writes | more than 2 years ago

Earth 0

Harperdog writes "Paul N. Edwards has a great paper about the links between nuclear weapons testing and climate science. From the abstract: "Tracing radioactive carbon as it cycles through the atmosphere, the oceans, and the biosphere has been crucial to understanding anthropogenic climate change. The earliest global climate models relied on numerical methods very similar to those developed by nuclear weapons designers for solving the fluid dynamics equations needed to analyze shock waves produced in nuclear explosions. The climatic consequences of nuclear war also represent a major historical intersection between climate science and nuclear affairs. Without the work done by nuclear weapons designers and testers, scientists would know much less than they now do about the atmosphere. In particular, this research has contributed enormously to knowledge about both carbon dioxide, which raises Earth’s temperature, and aerosols, which lower it." Great free paper at the Bulletin."
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