Simplified schematic of a multistage thermonuclear weapon

Numbered parts:
  1. bomb casing
  2. interior filling (plastic material)
  3. detonators
  4. conventional high explosive
  5. pusher (aluminum, others) and reflector (beryllium, tungsten)
  6. tamper (uranium-238)
  7. fissile core (plutonium or uranium-235)
  8. radiation shield (tungsten, others)
  9. fusion pusher/tamper (uranium-235 sleeve)
  10. fusion fuel (solid lithium-deuteride)
  11. sparkplug (uranium-235 or plutonium)

Sequence of events in explosion:

STAGE 1: fission explosion
STAGE 2: fusion explosion

© 2001-2003, 2006 by Wm. Robert Johnston.
Last modified 10 September 2006.
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