Lv 4
? asked in Politics & GovernmentMilitary · 10 years ago

Is it true that the amount of bombs dropped in WW2 is equal to one atomic bomb?

Carl Sagan mentions this in the last episode of Cosmos: a personal voyage, just seems shatteringly incomprehensible

7 Answers

  • 10 years ago
    Favourite answer

    No. The total tons of bombs dropped in WW Two. was 2.7 MILLION tons of bombs. We dropped about 1.5 MILLION tons of bombs on Germany alone.

    The Atomic bombs dropped were in the KILOTON range. 13-18 KILOTONS for the Hiroshima bomb and 21 KILOTONS for the Nagasaki bomb.

    In other words, the atomic bombs did not come even close to the total tonnage dropped, being about 1/1000 less. So if Sagan said "Atomic Bomb" he was totally wrong.

    He probably said "equal to a hydrogen bomb" in which case he was partially right.

    HYDROGEN BOMBS, are actually measured in units of a million tons, called a MEGATON..... There a variety of yields of those from "small ones" of around 100 KILOTONS (0.1 Megaton) to the massive TZAR bomb of the Russians which was 50 MEGATONS. Some of them probably were close to the 2.7 MILLION TONS of bombs dropped in WW Two.

    Today the H Bombs are a lot smaller than they were in the 1960s. Far more accurate guidance systems allow them to be more on target so a larger bomb is not needed to ensure the target is taken out. We have some that are very small. Davy Crockett for example weights about 50 pounds total and has a yield of 0.01 Kiloton, or TEN TONS of explosives. That is what is often talked about when the subject of suitcase bombs come up. An average guy could (and often does) carry a suit case weighing just 50 pounds. And TEN TONS of explosive power could probably take down any building you could name.

  • 10 years ago

    Well, actually it would be 2 atomic bombs. There was one dropped on a Japan city at the end of the war. Excluding that, then you are correct one atomic bomb

  • 10 years ago


    Actually most of the nuclear bombs we have in our stockpile are indeed the same ones designed in the 1960s, aka B-61. Granted they do go through modernization procedures from time to time, and Sandia Labs redesigned the outer shape in the late 90s to add more more penetration to some models. But, ultimately, its all 60s tech.

  • Wayne
    Lv 6
    10 years ago

    It is equal to 3.

    2 atomic bombs WERE dropped in anger during WW2, and the extra one is made up out of conventional bombs dropped in anger.

  • What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
  • 10 years ago

    I have read this in the past. It was compared to one of the bombs dropped in war to end the war and save a lot of lives.

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago

    Didn't they drop a few atomic bombs in world war two?

  • WRG
    Lv 7
    10 years ago

    That depends on which nuclear bomb you are talking about. But personally I think it is a significant overstatement.

Still have questions? Get answers by asking now.