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Title: The ephemeral and the enduring: Trajectories of disappearance for the scientific objects of American Cold War nuclear weapons testing

Abstract

Here, the historical material culture produced by American Cold War nuclear weapons testing includes objects of scientific inquiry that can be generally categorized as being either ephemeral or enduring. Objects deemed to be ephemeral were of a less substantial nature, being impermanent and expendable in a nuclear test, while enduring objects were by nature more durable and long-lasting. Although all of these objects were ultimately subject to disappearance, the processes by which they were transformed, degraded, or destroyed prior to their disappearing differ. Drawing principally upon archaeological theory, this paper proposes a functional dichotomy for categorizing and studying the historical trajectories of nuclear weapons testing technoscience artifacts. In examining the transformation patterns of steel towers and concrete blockhouses in particular, it explores an associated loss of scientific method that accompanies a science object's disappearance.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1358160
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-16-24467
Journal ID: ISSN 1210-0250
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Teorie vedy / Theory of Science
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 38; Journal Issue: 3; Journal ID: ISSN 1210-0250
Publisher:
Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
45 MILITARY TECHNOLOGY, WEAPONRY, AND NATIONAL DEFENSE; Cold War; bikini atoll; nuclear weapons testing; blockhouses; zero towers

Citation Formats

Hanson, Todd. The ephemeral and the enduring: Trajectories of disappearance for the scientific objects of American Cold War nuclear weapons testing. United States: N. p., 2016. Web.
Hanson, Todd. The ephemeral and the enduring: Trajectories of disappearance for the scientific objects of American Cold War nuclear weapons testing. United States.
Hanson, Todd. Fri . "The ephemeral and the enduring: Trajectories of disappearance for the scientific objects of American Cold War nuclear weapons testing". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1358160.
@article{osti_1358160,
title = {The ephemeral and the enduring: Trajectories of disappearance for the scientific objects of American Cold War nuclear weapons testing},
author = {Hanson, Todd},
abstractNote = {Here, the historical material culture produced by American Cold War nuclear weapons testing includes objects of scientific inquiry that can be generally categorized as being either ephemeral or enduring. Objects deemed to be ephemeral were of a less substantial nature, being impermanent and expendable in a nuclear test, while enduring objects were by nature more durable and long-lasting. Although all of these objects were ultimately subject to disappearance, the processes by which they were transformed, degraded, or destroyed prior to their disappearing differ. Drawing principally upon archaeological theory, this paper proposes a functional dichotomy for categorizing and studying the historical trajectories of nuclear weapons testing technoscience artifacts. In examining the transformation patterns of steel towers and concrete blockhouses in particular, it explores an associated loss of scientific method that accompanies a science object's disappearance.},
doi = {},
journal = {Teorie vedy / Theory of Science},
number = 3,
volume = 38,
place = {United States},
year = {Fri Jul 01 00:00:00 EDT 2016},
month = {Fri Jul 01 00:00:00 EDT 2016}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
The DOI is not currently available

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