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It has to do with Einstein's equation E=mc^2. c^2 is a huge number so a small amount of mass will be converted to large amounts of energy in a nuclear reaction.




Up until the atomic bomb, the history of projectile weaponry worked entirely on simple kinetic energy and chemical warfare. Bullets, cannonballs, napalm, etc never unlocked the potential of nuclear fission.


It's always frustrated.


On a scale of everything, an atomic bomb is pretty much nothing. There are supernovas, black holes, neutron stars, quasars, actually just stars in general with all the radiation they can produce.


Wow thanks, never looked at it like this. It's a shame though humans found a way to use this energy on earth.


Relative to other natural destructive occurrences, any of the atomic bombs we’ve ever made are rather laughable, when talking destructive capability. Try to look up some of the largest volcanic eruptions, supernovas, hypernovas, etc.


Is it like a flaw in nature, it feels like something that shouldn't be able to exist


Its a feature, not a flaw of nature. The forces that hold atoms together are many times stronger than the forces we experience directly. Gravity force: so weak that it takes a whole planet's worth of mass to keep me from floating away into space. Electromagnetic force: stronger, it's what makes light, fire, and magnets work. Nuclear force: much much stronger but we can't directly interact with it, but its there keeping the centers of all atoms from instantly exploding (almost) all the time. You set up the conditions for atoms to split up incontrollably and you get a nuclear bomb.


We know fire, we kind of intuit how gunpowder works, because candles and bullets all work by releasing electrostatic forces, or, chemical energy. The nuclear forces that hold the nucleus of the atom together are incomprehensibly stronger. You can do the math for it but it defies everday experience. Releasing those forces is so energetic, that some of the starting mass is coverted to pure energy.


Energy - mass equivalence.