Apr 16, 2017 02:39 AM EDT
The Chilling Physics Behind The ‘Mother Of All Bombs’ - US Detonates Trump Card [Video]
On Thursday night, the United States Military has dropped the "Mother of All Bombs" in Afghanistan. Technically known as the GBU-43/B Massive Ordinance Air Blast (MOAB) bomb, the operation reportedly destroyed underground tunnels used by ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) to stage attacks against government forces.
Although huge, the MOAB is surely a non-nuclear weapon. The US military also explains that the attack was only a "tactical move" to stop terrorism. To be specific, the bombing took place in Nangarhar province near the border with Pakistan. The operation killed 36 ISIS fighters, per Afghan officials.
For the record, American Intel agents estimate that ISIS had 600 to 800 active fighters in the said coordinates. It is still unclear if the US intends to drop more bombs in the area. CNN reported that the "Mother of All Bombs' exploded above ground but still managed to destroy weapons hidden beneath the surface. No civilians were hurt, both US and Afghan forces clarified.
The question now is: Where does the massive power of the MOAB come from? According to IFL Science, Thursday's detonation itself was caused by a mixture of TNT (80 percent) and aluminum powder (20 percent) called "Tritonal". Aluminum helps the TNT ignite and reach an "extremely high pressure" at a faster rate. The energy released by one MOAB is equivalent to a magnitude 6.0 earthquake.
Meanwhile, one MOAB weighs 10.3 tons and measures about 9.2 meters in length. Technically speaking, it has an explosive yield of up to 46 billion joules. Lastly, a GPS on the ground guides it to its target and it does not detonate upon impact. Instead, the MOAB explodes just above its "prey", around 6 feet in height.
For the record, the use of nuclear bombs is still prohibited on anywhere in the world. However, powerful countries still refuse to give up the fight for the most powerful military arsenal to date. Nonetheless, no use of nuclear bombs has been recorded since the Nagasaki bombing.
Join the Conversation