A detailed post over at Hot Air regarding the Iranian nuclear intentions and possibilities glosses over the detonator, which is a key part of the bomb (if they have it).  The detonator is crucial to any modern bomb and is very difficult to build.  This is because the detonator is comprised of lenses which focus on the core to generate heat.   Detonator lenses start the fission process compresses the core giving it enough temperature and pressure to generate fusion, The neutrons expelled in the fusion process attack the remaining fissionable material that did not ignite in the initial reaction.  This trigger is composed of thirrty or forty tiny A Bombs which fire in a millisecond sequence in order to control the explosion.  The Russian penetration of the Manhattan Project had everything to do with the detonator as well as the bomb.  It was the plans for the detonator that Russian agent Hall stole and passed on to the Soviets.  In real terms today, the Iranians can probably buy ready to go detonation devices and it may be that we discovered the purchases.  Detonators that work are critical to any bomb program and are the most difficult to build. 


ParatrooperJJ said...

I beleive you are speaking of hydrogen bombs? Standard fission weapons don't require a technically difficult trigger.

Anonymous said...

The newest method is called full-scale hemispherical explosively driven shock system a method thought far beyond Iranian capabilities. It is this system that they might be able to buy on the open market. The trigger is very hard to build but in it's simplest form all that has to be done is send one clump of refined uranium into another at a certain speed and whamo.