Groveling over US nuke inventory, need life, was Re: ELIEZER(thanks!) on the ethics of using weapons of mass destruction...

From: Michael M. Butler (
Date: Sun Nov 25 2001 - 00:13:01 MST

> Actually the gun design was never used again on any bomb,
> it's just too crude and inefficient and won't work at all with plutonium.
> John K Clark

Obligatory oversharing time--FAS website disagrees (I'm just looking at the USA inventory):

They say there were 5 Mk-1s made and the unblownup ones were all recycled by the end of 1950.

However, other _fielded_ gun-type weapons listed there are Mk-8, W-9, Mk-9/T-4, Mk-11, W-19,
W-23, W-33. They appear to have been intended as simple, skinny, high-ballistic-coefficient
devices for artillery and/or earth penetration. 50,000 Gs and up were a tough design constraint.

Other curiosities:
-W-48, W-79 and the cancelled W-74 were/are strange "small-diameter linear implosion" Pu gadgets.
One gathers that they "outgunned" the Pu assembly time problem, and probably used serious T-boosting.
The W-79 had a dual-mode variant with an enhanced radiation (N-bomb) setting. Don't know how clean
it really was.

-The dinky 0.05-0.25 kT Mk-54 Davy Crockett was a spherical implosion warhead, as was the demo
charge "oil drum" variant.

MMB (maybe I should collect hubcaps?)

My moronic mnemonic for smart behavior: "DICKS" == 
diplomacy, integrity, courage, kindness, skepticism.

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