First air drop test of a thermonuclear weapon. The weapon was dropped from a USAF B-52 bomber (not seen) that flew from Fred Island, Eniwetak (sometimes spelled Enewetak or Eniewetok), on May 21, 1956. View appears to be from an aircraft flying above altocumulus clouds, below higher stratiform layers. The film begins with a complete whiteout from the initial fireball. As that subsides, local stratiform clouds take on a rosy hue and the center fireball is seen rising above them. As the fireball rises, it takes on a somewhat hemispherical shape, flat on the bottom, from which a straight stem-like column extends toward the ground. The light of the explosion slowly fades and complete darkness ensues. Official accounts state that the intended ground zero was directly over Namu Island, but the flight crew mistook an observation facility on a different island for their targeting beacon with the result that the weapon delivery was grossly in error. The bomb detonated some 4 miles off target over the ocean northeast of Namu. As a result essentially all of the weapons effects data was lost. ( Note: According to ancillary reports, the delivery error resulted in blast overpressures and thermal effects on the 6 structural response targets between Iroij and Namu Islands, greatly exceeding specifications for any use in scientific military modeling of high yield aerial detonations. Plans for graded damages analysis failed when all the structures collapsed. Effects cameras also failed from the intense fireball heat.)
Airmen on the ground at Eniwitok Atoll (sometimes spelled Enewetak or Eniewetok), Marshall Islands, unload radioactive cargo from a drone B-17 aircraft, of the 509th Bombardment Group, that had flown through the cloud following the atomic Test Able explosion at Bikini Atoll, during Operation Crossroads. (The drone displays an atomic cloud Logo on its fuselage.) The airmen use an ingenious arrangement of cables to remotely position a container under the drone's bomb bay. Then using remote controls, they release cargo from the bomb bay into the container. They reposition the cables (running near the aircraft, to minimize personal exposure) and repeat the process with another container. A C-54 carrying the 509th Bombardment Group's Mushroom Cloud Logo, stands ready to transport the cargo.
The B-29 "Dave's Dream" returns to airfield in Marshall Islands, after dropping atomic bomb on Bikini Atoll, in Test Able of Operation Crossroads, on July 1st, 1946, during U.S. nuclear testing. The B-29 lands and taxis to a parking place on the ramp. The area around the aircraft is cordoned off and the crew is confined therein as they deplane. Navy photographers take photos. An interviewer talks to crew members. The crew walks away from the aircraft along a cordoned pathway between numerous military personnel on hand to greet them on this historic occasion. The aircraft, number 44-27354, was actually participating in its second atomic mission. It also served as a photographic platform for the mission to Nagasaki on August 9, 1945, when it was named "Big Stink.". Pilot for the Bikini mission was Major Woodrow Swancutt of Wisconsin Rapids, WI. The aircraft was renamed "Dave's Dream" in honor of Captain David Semple, a bombardier killed during the crash of another B-29 on March 7, 1946, near Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Scenes of various atomic bomb tests conducted by America during a course of time. Shows the atomic bomb test in Alamogordo, New Mexico(1945). Nuclear weapons tests for shot Able and shot Baker, tested at Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands as part of Operation Crossroads(1946). Close -up view of massive nuclear explosion at sea seen from shore with blast wave approaching unmanned ships near harbor and a palm tree on shore seen waving dramatically. Atomic bomb tests at the Enewetak Atoll (sometimes spelled Eniwetok or Eniewetok) In the Marshall Island as part of Operation Sandstone (1948).
B-17 drone aircraft of the 509th Bombardment Group (bearing mushroom cloud Logo) is parked on pierced steel plank ramp, at Eniwetok (sometimes spelled Enewetak or Eniewetok), Marshall Islands, during Operation Crossroads atomic tests. Airmen remove air sampling instruments from the aircraft that was exposed to the cloud during the Able Atomic Test explosion. They place them on a truck for analysis. One airman carries a cage full of birds, from the aircraft.
U.S. Nuclear weapons test ABLE in Bikini Atoll also called Bikini Lagoon, on July 1, 1946. Ships anchored in the lagoon in the foreground are seen from aircraft flying above. The nuclear device with yield of 23 thousand tons of TNT equivalent, is dropped from the high flying B-29 bomber named Dave's Dream (not seen) and detonates at a height of 520 feet above sea level. The screen goes white from the light of the resulting fireball. As that light dissipates, the characteristic mushroom cloud is seen billowing upwards, at the same time as a surge of water occurs at the base of the explosion. The upper part of the mushroom begins to separate from the stem, below.