The atoll was used for peacetime atomic explosions conducted for experimental purposes by the United States between and Lying north of the Equator, Bikini is miles km northwest of Kwajalein and miles km east of Enewetak Atoll. It consists of a ring of about 20 small coral islands whose average elevation is only some 7 feet 2.
Seventy years have passed since those promises, and the chain of islands remain deserted. Although residents are desperate to return, it appears the time has not yet come for the long-anticipated homecoming. A study published this week said the remote atoll may still be too radioactive for inhabitation.
On the morning of 1 Julya second sun rose over the remote Pacific island chain of Bikini Atoll. Now it was a bomb site. The Bikini islanders had agreed to a series of nuclear tests on their islands believing they would be able to return as soon as the experiments ended.
The atoll of Bikini, a necklace of 23 islands with sandy beaches and swaying palms that surround a tranquil, blue-green lagoon, presents a startling paradox for the nuclear age. How does a small coral atoll in the middle of the Pacific, which was once rocked violently by 23 atomic- and hydrogen-bomb blasts in the s and s, manage to appear so beautiful and abundant with nature's bounty just a half-century later? The remarkable legacy of these islands and their people began just after the second world war, in Decemberwhen US President Harry S Truman issued a directive to army and navy officials that joint testing of nuclear weapons would be necessary "to determine the effect of atomic bombs on American warships". Because of its location away from regular air and sea routes, Bikini was chosen to be the new nuclear proving ground for the US government.
Its name evokes beautiful women in tiny bathing suits on a tropical paradise in the water, and its location mirrors the sentiment. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Bikini Atoll is a Micronesian Island chain located about halfway between Hawaii and Australia, and is what should be a heavenly place on Earth.
Before the invention of the bikini swimsuit in however, Bikini was simply an atoll of 23 small islands and coral reefs in the Marshall Islands of the Pacific Ocean. The swimsuit was named after the bombings that occurred on the islands of Bikini on 1 July Nuclear bombs were dropped 23 times between and on the Bikini atoll, creating huge craters in the reef and rendering over 28 species of coral extinct.
June 7, report. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciencesthe team describes the reasoning for their testing, the methods they used, their results and what they believe should be done going forward. As most everyone knows, the United States embarked on an ambitious nuclear arms program beginning during the closing days of World War II.
Timothy J. Jorgensen does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. Republish our articles for free, online or in print, under Creative Commons licence.
The former island paradise of Bikini Atoll is slowing blooming back to life, 70 years after the United States dropped 23 nuclear bombs on it, including a device in that was 1,times larger than the Hiroshima atom bomb. A team of scientists from Stanford University have been surprised to discover an abundance of marine life apparently thriving in the crater of Bikini Atoll, which was declared a nuclear wasteland after the bombings, with its inhabitants relocated to other islands. Animals studied by scientists in and around the Chernobyl blast showed deformities and mutations, but the Stanford teams initial research suggest the marine life in Bikini may have fared significantly better.
Inwhen the residents of Bikini Atoll agreed to leave their home, they never expected that their exile would be permanent. InBikini Atoll was a tropical paradise situated in the middle of nowhere, about halfway between the Hawaiian Islands and the Philippines. It was a part of the Marshall Islands, which included 33 other tiny dots in the Pacific Ocean. Bikini's name derived not from the bathing suit, but from the Marshallese language, and translated to "surface of coconuts.