Watch: What would happen if a nuclear bomb was dropped on Edinburgh?

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AN interactive map has been released that shows the devastating effect that a nuclear bomb could have on Edinburgh and the Central Belt.

The terrifying simulator, available on website Outrider.org shows the extent of the fireball, shock wave, heat and radiation that would be caused by a variety of nuclear detonations.

Outrider.org shows what would happen if a nuclear bomb was dropped on a specified area.

Outrider.org shows what would happen if a nuclear bomb was dropped on a specified area.

Users can choose to simulate four different types of nuclear bombs as well as their blast type on a location of their choice.

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The blast types are air burst and surface. A surface blast is when the bomb detonates on the ground. This effects a smaller geographic area but leaves much more radiation in the area. Air burst is when the bomb is detonated over an area. Air burst leaves less nuclear fallout but its radial extent is significantly larger, which is likely to lead to more casualties.

Outrider’s app is based on NUKEMAP, created by Alex Wellerstein, an historian of nuclear weapons. All data on the site is based on Wellerstein’s own calculations.

The tool’s simulation for the 15 kt Little Boy, also known as the Hiroshima atomic bomb, shows that central Edinburgh would be vaporised, leaving an estimated 58,907 dead and incinerating tens of thousands more from Dalry to Abbeyhill with thermal radiation.

The shock wave from North Korea’s Hwasong-14, an inter-continental ballistic missile, would have a radius of 13 square miles and would level all but specially-reinforced buildings. This bomb would kill an estimated 187,016 and injure 138,301, with residents as far away as Portobello experiencing severe third degree burns.

The American W-87 would flatten most of the city and result in about 190,300 casualties. Anyone withing 60 miles of the city centre would be left in a critical state.

The final munition Outrider users can simulate is the Tsar Bomba, which at 50,000 kt was the largest bomb ever detonated by the USSR. In this catastrophic scenario, Edinburgh would be wiped from the map, while Tsar Bomba’s 4000 square mile ring of fire would extend to Glasgow, Perth and the Scottish Borders. The app estimates that there would be more than 700,000 fatalities, with a further 500,000 critical.

The team behind Outrider say they hope the map will put the dangers of nuclear weapons into perspective for people around the globe.

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