Photos of atomic bomb tests


Today is the 58th anniversary of the first hydrogen bomb detonation, a US test in the Pacific's Marshall islands. LIFE presents a gallery of A-Bomb Tests and related imagery.


Top: A 1971 nuclear explosion in Mururoa Atoll, in French Polynesia, resembles something from another world. France announced on March 24, 2009, that it will compensate 150,000 victims of nuclear testing carried out in the 1960s in French Polynesia and Algeria, after decades of denying its responsibility. An initial sum of 10 million euros (14 million dollars) was set aside for military and civilian staff as well as local populations who fell ill from radiation exposure.

Left: U.S. Navy Vice Admiral William H. P. Blandy, his wife, and Rear Admiral Frank J. Lowry cut a cake made in the shape of a mushroom cloud at a reception for Operation Crossroads, November 6, 1946.

Terrible Beauty: A-Bomb Tests