King was the second and the last detonation during the operation Ivy. It also was one of the largest pure
fission bombs ever detonated or produced. The test device itself was a prototype for the later Mk 18 bomb. The name King
indicated that the yield was still in Kilotons, not megatons as Ivy-Mike. The
prototype and the actual weapon used Super Oralloy as a fissile material.
The rest of the test device mainly was based standard weapon components. Base was the Mk-6D bomb, the 92 point implosion
system came from the Mk-13 bomb, etc. Total mass of the complete assembly was 8600 lb.
Safety devices and measurements were one of the most important aspects of this test. Considering that the test device itself contained more than 4 critical masses of fissile material it was really on the edge of the safety. For that matter, the core was filled with Boron and Aluminum chains. Those would absorb neutrons and prevent the pit collapse in case of the accidental detonation of the implosion lens high explosives, or severe impact. The safety chains were removed before detonations, in this case right before the airdrop. The bombing was commenced from the B36 bomber, at the altitude of 1480ft, wihch was 20 ft lower than planned.
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