nuclear winter


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nuclear winter,

theory holding that the smoke and dust produced by a large nuclear war would result in a prolonged period of cold on the earth. The earliest version of the theory, which was put forward in the early 1980s in the so-called TTAPS report (named for last initials of its authors, Richard P. Turco, Owen B. Toon, Thomas P. Ackerman, James B. Pollack, and Carl Sagan), held that the ensuing low temperatures and prolonged periods of darkness would obliterate plant life and seriously threaten the existence of the human species. Later models, which took into account additional variables, confirmed the basic conclusions of the TTAPS report and suggested that the detonation of 100 megatons (the explosive power of 100 million tons of TNT) over 100 cities could produce temperature drops ranging from 5 to 15 degrees.

nuclear winter

[′nü·klē·ər ′win·tər]
(meteorology)
Predicted global-scale changes resulting from a nuclear war, in which dust raised by nuclear bursts and smoke generated in fires would cause reductions in solar energy reaching the earth's surface and reductions in surface temperatures for periods of months.

nuclear winter

a period of extremely low temperatures and little light that has been suggested would occur as a result of a nuclear war
References in periodicals archive ?
Could the global-cooling mechanism of nuclear winter and volcanoes be intentionally used to combat global warming?
She asserts that in a possible nuclear exchange between India and Pakistan, "if any of either Russia or America's 2,250 strategic weapons on hair-trigger alert were launched either accidentally or purposefully in response, nuclear winter would ensue, meaning the end of most life on earth" (p.
War, the technology sector's nuclear winter, the wave of corporate scandals, the stock market's continued decline and overall economic conditions are overwhelmingly negative for the vast majority of companies.
Maybe it's true: The only things to survive the nuclear winter will be cockroaches.
In our sad and bloody history, we could never afford it, least of all now, with its potential for global destruction, nuclear winter, the extinction of all life.
With government uninterested, the private sector was left to build structures to sustain life through a nuclear winter.
I don't understand why if the whole planet is heating up, we're in the grips of what seems like a nuclear winter.
Some of the animus stemmed from his public stands on the nuclear arms race, the ballistic missile defense scam, and inadvertent climate modification, including global warming and nuclear winter.
Unless we have an agenda," he said then, "we become just one more of those transient phenomena that have become so common: where, for example, nuclear winter is on the front pages of every publication, and a year later nobody can remember what it is .
He does not beat one over the head with an account of the probable immediate destruction, followed by the long agony of fall-out, followed perhaps by anarchy and starvation in a nuclear winter, but there is no doubt he feels all these things.
A smoke pall spread over the region like the prototype of a nuclear winter.
Today, however, the US shouldn't ignore how the modern versions of these inhuman arsenals could easily plunge the planet into nuclear winter and eradicate humanity for good.

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