HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - President John F. Kennedy signs the Partial Nuclear Test Ban.
While the Cold War raged through the 1950's, the United States detonated nuclear weapons like the 8 megaton Ivy Mike and the 15 megaton Castle Bravo. The Soviet Union developed a massive 60 megaton bomb called Tsar Bomba in 1961. The sizes of these weapons and the potential destruction they could wreak made some politicians want to slow the nuclear arms race down.
The Soviet Union, the United States and Great Britain were the first signers of the Partial Nuclear Test Ban. It mandated that all further nuclear testing would be performed underground. At the time of negotiation over the Ban, Great Britain and the United States had great difficulty detecting underground nuclear tests with seismographic equipment. The Soviet Union delayed the Ban for several years because it did not want intrusive inspections of tests by the other countries signing the treaty.
There are currently 126 states that recognize the Ban.