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Home / World / Ten times bigger than Hiroshima: how North Korea's huge nuclear blast collapsed a mountain

Ten times bigger than Hiroshima: how North Korea's huge nuclear blast collapsed a mountain



Using advanced technology, scientists have compiled detailed radar data to show the devastating effects of North Korea's largest underground nuclear test.

The test took place under the mountain peak. Mantap in the northern part of the country on September 3, 2017, causing the collapse of the mountain. According to the international team of experts, the explosion was so severe that it shook the environment like a magnitude 5.2 earthquake.

The subterranean nuclear blast pushed the surface of the mountain down. Mantap outward by as much as 11 feet and left the mountain about 20 inches shorter, they said. Experts have based their analysis on regional and global seismic recordings as well as before and after radar measurements of the mountain surface using Germany's TerraSAR-X and Japan's ALOS-2 radar imaging satellites.

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The analysis was published this week before publication in the journal Science.

  KoreaMountain

Ground movement on the mountain. Mantap causes nuclear test by North Korea's September 3, underground. Arrows indicate horizontal displacement; Color indicates vertical movement. The explosion caused significant surface disturbances and large displacements over an area of ​​approximately 3.5 square miles (black outline). Red stars indicate the locations of previous atomic bomb tests. Balls are locations and sizes of the explosion (black, Mw 5.24) and aftershocks (white, Mw 4.5). (Source: Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University)

Scientists from the University of California at Berkeley, the German Research Center for Geosciences in Potsdam, the Leibniz University Hannover, the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing participated in the research. The project was also supported by the US Air Force Research Laboratory.

Using computer models, the team was able to determine the exact location of the explosion, which was just below the kilometer-high peak of the mountain. They were also able to determine the depth of the explosion, which occurred between a quarter and a third of a mile below the summit.

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Experts also noted the site of an aftershock that occurred 8.5 minutes after the nuclear explosion and about 2,300 meters south of the bomb blast. The second seismic event, they speculate, may have been caused by a collapsing tunnel or cavity left over from an earlier nuclear test.

  Punngyeri

Google Earth image of the mountain. Mantap in North Korea's Punggye-ri nuclear test site shows the nation's sites six atomic bomb tests, including the September 3, 2017, test (red), the largest one, which lowered the mountain by 20 inches. (Courtesy of Google Earth)

The Mountain The Mantap explosion was the rogue's sixth nuclear test, and rumors of its impact on the "stressed" mountain made headlines worldwide.

The latest high-tech radar data provide a fascinating insight into North Korea's core nuclear program has long been the source of international concern. "This is the first time that the full three-dimensional surface shifts associated with a subterranean nuclear test have been mapped and presented to the public," lead author Teng Wang of Singapore's Earth Observatory at Nanyang Technological University said in a statement [19659005] TREASURE ICELAND: RARE METALS DISCOVERY ON REMOTE-PACIFIC ATOLL IS WONDERFUL BILLION DOLLARS

The fifth and sixth test within the Mt. Mantap had a yield between 120 and 300 kilotons, about 10 times the size of the bomb dropped by the USA on Hiroshima during the Second World War, according to the scientists involved in the study. "That makes it either a small hydrogen or fusion bomb or a large nuclear or nuclear fission," they said in a statement.

  North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attends a military exercise between the Korean People's Army (KPA) | Great Combined Unit 526 and KPA Combined Unit 478 at an undisclosed location in this undated photo, published by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) Pyongyang on October 24, 2014. REUTERS / KCNA (NORTH KOREA - POLITICS MILITARY) NOTICE EDITORS - THIS IMAGE IS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. Reuters will not be able to independently verify the authenticity, content, location, or date of this image. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS AS CUSTOMER SERVICE. NO SALES OF THIRD PARTIES. NOT FOR USE BY REUTERS THIRD PARTY DISTRIBUTORS. SOUTH KOREA OUT. Commercial or editorial sales in South Korea - RTR4BIWT

File Photo – North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attends a military exercise between Korean Combined Army Combined Unit 526 (KPA) and KPA Combined Unit 478 at an unknown location in this undated photo edited by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) (REUTERS / KCNA)

The use of satellite radar imaging, called SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar), was an important part of the research that allowed the team to create a completely new picture of how the blast changed the mountain.

"SAR real It plays a unique role in the monitoring of explosions, as it is a direct representation of the local ground surface, in contrast to seismology, where you get to know the nature of the source that emits waves from the event at remote stations "said Douglas Dreger of the UC Berkeley Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences and a member of the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory, in a statement. "This is the first time someone has modeled the mechanics of a subterranean explosion using satellite and seismic data."

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Mantap is part of the North Korean Punggye-ri nuclear test. There was speculation that the collapse of the mountain may have prompted North Korea's recent decision to halt nuclear and missile tests.

However, there are conflicting theories about the exact location of the sixth North Korean nuclear test. For example, a separate scientific study identified the explosion almost one kilometer northwest of the site identified in the latest research.

U.S. President Donald Trump announced in a tweet on Thursday that he will meet North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore on June 12th.

Katherine Lam and the Associated Press of Fox News contributed to this report.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers


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