DIRECTORMelman, Richard
TITLEDismantling the Bomb
RUNNING TIME51 minutes
Web Access
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This film focuses on plutonium’s role in nuclear weapons and the problems associated with its disposal as those weapons are dismantled. It first presents a brief history of the development of nuclear weapons and the ensuing arms race, both of which have resulted in the production of massive amounts of plutonium. Viewers learn about nuclear weapons design and the properties of plutonium. The film then moves to the challenges of disposing of plutonium, discussing the four methods of disposal: storage, reprocessing, transmutation, and ejection into space. An interesting segment provides footage of the disassembly operation at the Pantex facility in Amarillo, Texas – the only facility in the United States where nuclear weapons are assembled and disassembled. The comments of veteran nuclear weapons designer Ted Taylor provide useful insight into the problems associated with the existence and disposal of plutonium.

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