War Data: Nuclear Explosions 1945-1998

How would you visualize over 2000 nuclear explosions since 1945?

Artist Isao Hashimoto created a video time-lapse that shows the 2053 nuclear tests and explosions between 1945-1998. North Korea’s two nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009 are not included in the time lapse. If you’d like to view an interactive map of nuclear testing that provides more data than the animation below, the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) has created this interactive map of nuclear testing worldwide.


What do the visuals and sounds indicate?

A metronomic beep every second represents months passing, and a different tone indicates explosions from different countries. It starts out slowly, with the Manhattan Project’s single test in the US and the two terrible bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki that ended World War II.

After a couple of minutes or so, however, once the USSR and Britain entered the nuclear club, the tests really start to build up, reaching a peak of nearly 140 in 1962, and remaining well over 40 each year until the mid-80s.

Is there any particular part of the visualization that stood out to you?

Note: this post is part of a series on war data.

[Via FlowingData.]

Please let me know what you think....