The Cold War, which ran between roughly the end of the Second World War in 1945 and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, was a period unlike any other in human history. Never before had two rivals faced off against each other with the whole world as their battleground, and with the power to wipe out the human race at the touch of a button.
Spurred by innovation coming from the six years fighting against Hitler, many new designs, techniques and materials had been developed, crowned by the atomic bomb. But with an entirely new geopolitical situation and entirely new options in terms of R&D, researchers sometimes went down strange paths in their search for an effective weapon of war.
Here are six proposals to come out of the Cold War which were, looking back, a little strange.
1. The Ryan X-13 Vertijet
2. The Bartini Beriev VVA-14
3. The M-29 Davy Crockett
4. Obiekt 279
5. Project Orion
6. The Tsar Bomba
Top Image: The Cold War saw many new weapons systems and inventions tried and tested, some more success than others (United States DOD / Public Domain).
By Joseph Green