The Russian forces in Ukraine have reportedly used a thermobaric bomb, also called a vacuum bomb, according to Oksana Markarova, Ukraine’s ambassador to the United States.
Vladimir Putin calls Russia’s biggest version “The Father of All Bombs” with power secondary only to that of a nuclear weapon and without radiation. Smaller ordinances are equipped on rocket launchers.
Conventional explosives use 25% fuel and 75% oxidizer, but a thermobaric explosive uses almost 100% fuel, consuming available oxygen in a wide area.
- Vaporized body
- Permanent hearing loss
- Gastrointestinal rupture
- Dislocated eyes
- Major bone breakage
Thermobaric weapons were first used by the United States in Vietnam, where they were effective sucking oxygen out of tunnels, caves and bunkers. Russia and the U.S. both used them in Afghanistan.
Russia declassified footage a few years ago of the largest man-made explosion in human history from its 1961 Tsar Bomba test. Putin has put his nuclear deterrent forces on alert status.