US Scientists Announce Successful Tests Flights With Mock Nuclear Weapon
U.S. scientists in New Mexico at the Sandia National Laboratories announced Saturday that they conducted successful test flights related to an upgraded version of a nuclear bomb.
According to the Associated Press, the weapon has been part of the American arsenal for decades.
Scientists have been working on the B61-12 for a number of years, and government officials tell the AP U.S. tests that utilize mock versions of the actual bomb are necessary for upgrading efforts.
An F-16 from Nellis Air Force Base dropped the inactive form of the bomb over the Nevada desert last March to test the weapon’s non-nuclear capabilities as well as the plane’s ability to carry the weapon. That particular mock bomb landed in a dry lake bed at the Tonopah Test Range.
“It’s great to see things all come together: the weapon design, the test preparation, the aircraft, the range and the people who made it happen,” Anna Schauer, director of Sandia’s Stockpile Resource Center, said in a statement.
The announcement comes in the wake of a failed nuclear missile test launch in North Korea on Sunday. Vice President Mike Pence warned the communist dictatorship during his visit to a U.S. military base in the Demilitarized Zone Sunday not to test the resolve of the U.S. “or the strength of our military forces.”
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