Russia displays copy of most powerful nuke bomb ever detonated

A mock Soviet AN-602 hydrogen bomb at the exhibition, Chain Reaction of Success, being held in Moscow to mark the 70th anniversary of Russia's nuclear history.
A mock Soviet AN-602 hydrogen bomb at the exhibition, Chain Reaction of Success, being held in Moscow to mark the 70th anniversary of Russia's nuclear history.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

MOSCOW • Eight metres long and weighing 25 tonnes, a replica of the so-called Tsar Bomb, the most powerful nuclear bomb ever detonated, has gone on display for the first time in Russia.

Tested in 1961 by the Soviet Union, the hydrogen bomb - also known as the AN-602 - was the result of an atomic research programme ordered by Soviet leader Joseph Stalin just before the end of World War II. Its goal: develop the atomic bomb as the United States had.

This symbol of the Cold War nuclear arms race is being showcased at an exhibition centre near the Kremlin to mark 70 years of Russian nuclear history. It comes as the nation's ties with the West remain strained by its 2014 annexation of Crimea from Ukraine and its alleged support for separatist rebels.

Mr Mikhail Bayaskhalanov, an exhibition guide, said: "Nuclear energy is not only atomic bombs and missiles but also civilian nuclear programmes, icebreakers, electricity production."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 07, 2015, with the headline 'Russia displays copy of most powerful nuke bomb ever detonated'. Print Edition | Subscribe