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Bomb Alarm System sensor

The Bomb Alarm System (also known as the Bomb Alarm Display System) was a US and UK network of optical sensors intended to confirm the detonation of an enemy nuclear weapon near cities or military installations within the US or at US operated early warning radar sites in the UK or Greenland.[1]

The BAS was designed by Western Union in 1959[2] and was in full operation by 1962. The BAS was the responsibility of the 9th Space Division. The BAS operated until 1967.

Erroneous indications were received from the Thule Air Base BAS in 1968 when a B-52 on Chrome Dome Alert crashed into the ground.[citation needed]

The BAS sensors were designed to report the occurrence of a nuclear flash via telephone or telegraph lines before the sensor was destroyed by the explosion. They were designed to ignore spurious signals from lightning, sunlight, or electrical surges.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Atomic Bomb Alarm: Early Days of Early Warning". United States Air Force. 9/11/2009. http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=15535. 
  2. Deibert, C. R.; Buckingham, W. D. (January, 1963). "Bomb Alarm Display System 210-A". Western Union Technical Review. Western Union Telegraph Company. p. 31. http://massis.lcs.mit.edu/archives/technical/western-union-tech-review/17-1/p032.htm. 

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