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China and Nuclear Weapons Destin Fairman. Test History 4 1953: Research begins on nuclear capabitities research spark delivered by Soviets capabilities.

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Presentation on theme: "China and Nuclear Weapons Destin Fairman. Test History 4 1953: Research begins on nuclear capabitities research spark delivered by Soviets capabilities."— Presentation transcript:

1 China and Nuclear Weapons Destin Fairman

2 Test History : Research begins on nuclear capabitities research spark delivered by Soviets capabilities eventually came from USSR first weapon provided in exchange for Chinese help in mines Later technology also given to Chinese from USSR : China announces desire to produce weapons : Production of nuclear bombs begins : Production of thermonuclear devices begins

3 Lop Nor Test Site

4 Test history 4 Testing began after USSR gave China a weapon Testing continued after withdrawal of Soviet support to spite the nuclear monopoly of the US and USSR 4 Used weapons to improve international prestige 4 Also viewed as a way to provide security

5 Test History 4 Test History Chinese have tested mainly small weapons 4 Copied several designs from other major powers 4 Created warheads for use in submarines 4 Created small weapons transportable by Jeeps or tanks

6 Test History 4 First test occurred at Lop Nor n6 tests done at Lop Nor nUsed a U-235 weapon nDetonated on top of a tower 4 Eventually used airdrop, atmospheric, underground, shaft and tower testing methods 4 Also tested hydrogen and lithium-6 weapons

7 Test History 4 Recent testing Last test was underground in 1996 No test details have been released since Have only tested 5% as many weapons as US and USSR/Russia Had slowed in comparison to US and USSR/Russian tests

8 Test History 4 Currently believed to have weapons technology comparable to all other major nuclear powers 4 May have weapons with yields on the order of tens to hundreds of kilotons 4 Possibly developing a neutron bomb 4 US believes the Chinese obtained their weapon designs chiefly through espionage

9 China and the CTBT 4 Beginning to show more support Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing has offered support to UN Have not ratified CTBT 4 UN not convinced of support China will not suspend testing until teaties are in affect Tested 3 days after committing to disarmament at Non- Proliferation Review and Extension Conference Insists on continuing “peaceful nuclear explosions”

10 China and the CTBT 4 China is an important, but unpredictable, player in the nuclear world 4 Feared as possible missile and nuclear material merchant 4 May support international non-proliferation efforts May ratify CTBT, but just as likely to not ratify

11 China and the CTBT 4 Why would you want to continue testing? Update aging nuclear program Ensure survival of nuclear deterrent 4 Why does China not need to continue testing? Good relations with neighbors (Russia, Vietnam, India) Believed to need only minimal deterrent


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