Russia tests the world's largest ever non-nuclear bomb
September 12, 2007
Russia has exploded the world's biggest non-nuclear bomb in a dramatic escalation of the new Cold War.
Nicknamed 'the father of all bombs', it was filmed being dropped from a strategic bomber and exploding in a massive fireball.
The film then showed the debris of apartment buildings and armoured vehicles at a testing range, as well as ground burned by a massive explosion.
DESTRUCTION: The world's largest non-nuclear bomb tested by Russians
It didn't give the bomb's military name or say when it was tested.
Yuri Balyko, head of the Russian defence ministry's institute in charge of weapons design, said yesterday: "We have got a relatively cheap ordnance with a high strike power."
The test comes as Russia spends massively increased oil revenue on rebuilding its military might.
It has been nicknamed the Father of All Bombs
The device is said to be four times more powerful than America's Massive Ordnance Air Blast, nicknamed the Mother Of All Bombs.
It would target more specific areas than nuclear bombs, and is an immediate threat to problem areas such as Chechnya.
Last night a source close to the US National Security Council said it was a "matter of concern" that Moscow would develop such a huge weapon at a time when there was no obvious need.
He added that the US would ask for an explanation. He said there was "no chance" that America would become involved in a new arms race with the Russians and that the US had no use for bombs larger than the ones already in its arsenal.
While US intelligence was aware that Moscow was working on a new thermobaric device, it did not know that a test was imminent.
A computer image of a new ordnance from Russian TV which is claimed by
the Russian military to be the world's most powerful non-nuclear bomb.
The latest raising of tension by Russia comes after president Vladimir Putin revived the Cold War era practice of flying bombers on long-range patrols.
Last week Royal Air Force fighter jets were scrambled to intercept eight Russian military planes flying in airspace patrolled by Nato.
The incident was the latest this summer in which British fighters have been used to warn off long-range Russian reconnaissance aircraft.
The so-called Mother of all Bombs is the biggest weapon in America's arsenal, capable of detonating 21,000lb of explosives above the ground.
The huge bomb, dropped from a slowmoving C130 Hercules aircraft and guided to its target by the satellite-linked global positioning system, can create temperatures of up to 1,000f (538c).
It is designed to obliterate chemical or biological agents concealed in bunkers.
The US is believed to have 15 in its arsenal but none is believed to have been used against an enemy.
©2007 Associated Newspapers Ltd