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Recent improving edits[edit]

Hey, I've recently revamped this article considerably as can be seen in the edit history. All the large IP user edits in the last while were by me, the Irish IP. I'm just here looking for feedback on the edits and any assistance with (a) a complete explanation for how the gold addition helped with the creation of the x-rays and (b) help with making the table I added more concise, as I have expressed in the edit history. "I'm not happy with the horizontal layout of the warhead energy distribution table, it'd be better if both "near sea level" explosions were one atop the other, and with that the table was more vertical in nature, so that we could fit the whole table on the right of the page rather than taking up so much horizontal room..." (talk) 04:29, 16 November 2014 (UTC)

Production & service history[edit]

Other than the apparently sourced production numbers, this section is unsourced and maybe original research. I will remove it in due course. - Crosbie 19:30, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Crosbie you have removed a gigantic amount of material and have given the most dubious of reasons for doing so. For example at 19:44 on 27 January 2015 you removed a chunk of text that was referenced with the rationale that rm. 'gold liner' claims from self-published sources. However instead of just tagging this with [better source needed] tags and awaiting for me, the dynamic Irish IP editor that added the vast majority of the material in the article, you simply moved to blank the entire section.
By the way, there are more sources than simply the webpage that I referenced for the Gold information. Another that corroborates this use of Gold in the W71, is Carey Sublette's site( ) which states: "Gold (Z=79) has been used in at least one weapon design as part of the tamper (or possibly the radiation case) - the W-71 warhead for the Spartan ABM missile. The W-71 used the thermal X-ray flux as its kill mechanism, so it was important for them to escape the weapon with as little hindrance as possible. The choice of gold may have been to tailor the opacity so that the hot X-rays present at the end of the fusion burn could escape without being absorbed. Gold is a good tamper material and has been used in ICF target designs due to its opacity".
So do the right thing and undo all your edits, as they have added nothing and are definitely not following the consensus building approach that wikipedia embodies. (talk) 12:26, 16 May 2015 (UTC) also appears to be a self-published site. Nuclear weapons design is largely classified, so it's not clear there *can* be a reliable source for these claims. If a reliable source for these claims does exist, however, I of course won't remove them. - Crosbie 15:22, 16 May 2015 (UTC)

Johnston's Archive source[edit]

I have flagged the use of Johnston's Archive archive as a source ( at Wikipedia:Reliable_sources/Noticeboard#Johnston.27s_Archive_-_self_published_site. - 05:07, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

Excellent. Now all that is left to do is explain why, considering that the reference is not used in this article? Maury Markowitz (talk) 12:15, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

As I noted on the noticeboard, both Johnston's Archive and The Nuclear Weapon Archive are self published sources. Both of these are provided as sources in the current version of the article [1]. WP:SPS states that self-published sources are largely not acceptable as sources. The only exception given is where the source is produced by an established expert on the subject matter, whose work in the relevant field has previously been published by reliable third-party publications. This does not apply to either Johnston's Archive or The Nuclear Weapon Archive. - Crosbie 18:32, 26 May 2015 (UTC)

Noticeboard discussion archived at - Crosbie 04:55, 29 May 2015 (UTC)

Gold mine quote[edit]

Quick note on the DoE gold mine quote - this is confirmed with context here [2], indicating that the warhead contained gold, and that this was not simply a figure of speech. - Crosbie 19:56, 26 May 2015 (UTC)

Great, as the above IP user, I'm glad you came to your senses and have corroborated what Carey Sublette* and others have stated.
Sublette, by the way, has indeed been cited by others in the field, contrary to your objections to using them as a reliable source. (talk) 10:23, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
The Hoover quote tells us that the Spartan warhead contained gold. It does not corroborate the claim that the W71 used a gold tamper, as is currently claimed in the article. When I use the term 'reliable source' on this talk page, I use it to mean reliable source as defined in Wikipedia:Verifiability. This page states that self-published sources are 'largely not acceptable as sources'. As I note above, the only exception listed is where a source has been produced by an established expert on the subject matter, whose work in the relevant field has previously been published by reliable third-party publications. This exception does not apply to Carey Sublette. The Nuclear Weapons Archive is not a reliable source for the purposes of Wikipedia. If a claim cannot be sourced to a source other than the Nuclear Weapons Archive, it should be removed from the article until and unless a reliable source can be found. - Crosbie 19:15, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

Gold in Ivy Mike claim[edit]

The article currently states ' is believed the 1952 Ivy Mike design used a thin layer of gold on the secondary casing walls to improve its performance'. The given source is Dark sun: The making of the hydrogen bomb by Richard Rhodes. No page reference is provided. Google allows us to search this book for the occurrence of the word 'gold': [3]. According to this, the only reference to the gold the metal is on page 194. All the other references are to Harry Gold. The reference on page 194 occurs in the phrase 'The October 18 document gave the Urchin's precise measurements and described its operation in detail — its two parts, its gold and nickel plating'. I have this book on Kindle. This passage refers to a neutron initiator used in the Trinity device. It does not refer to Ivy Mike. The given source does not support the claim made. If no verifiable page reference is given, or other reliable source provided, I will remove this claim from the article. - Crosbie 19:31, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

Don't wait, go for it. Maury Markowitz (talk) 21:14, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

Gold maximizes x-ray production?[edit]

The article currently states, 'The use of gold maximizes the production of x-rays as gold efficiently radiates thermal x-rays (see Moseley's law).' The given source is Elements of Thermonuclear Weapon Design at the Nuclear Weapons Archive.

  • the given source does not support the claim. The only relevant statements in the given source are 'The choice of gold may have been to tailor the opacity so that the hot X-rays present at the end of the fusion burn could escape without being absorbed. Gold is a good tamper material and has been used in ICF target designs due to its opacity'. The source claims the use of gold in the W71 was due to gold's *opacity* to x-rays - it says nothing about efficient radiation of thermal x-rays.
  • the given source is a self-published source, and not one produced by an established expert in the field, so it should not be cited as a source in Wikipedia in any case.

If no reliable source can be provided for this claim, I will remove it from the article. - Crosbie 07:14, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

It should be noted that an efficient absorber of EM radiation is by definition an efficient radiator. (talk) 12:18, 29 April 2016 (UTC)
If the self published source is cited by a reputable organization, then it DOES warrant the label "a reliable source".
Here's but 1 organization citing Carey Sublette. What do you say to that?
Secondly Gold's efficient opacity to X-rays and other radiation means that it gets efficiently heated up by that radiation and then (due to blackbody radiation and Moseley's law) radiates at a specific wavelength, i.e in the X-ray region. I am no physics expert but even I can see that Sublette is stating this very thing when using the word "opacity". It's two sides of the same coin. Do some reading or corroborate with a physicist if you're really that skeptical. (talk) 15:31, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

Production of Gold-198 "reduces radar blackout effect?"[edit]

I find this assertion made in the article at present rather dubious. The whole point in this weapon was to reduce the amount of residual radiation that would continue to ionize the thin atmosphere at altitude. Therefore they probably designed it to keep as much of the weapons neutrons away from the Gold as possible, but to still permit all the electromagnetic radiation to reach the gold.

Moreover the statement in the article is unsourced, unless I'm mistaken. (talk) 15:11, 15 August 2015 (UTC)