Experts warn of an increase in the risk of conflict after word surfaced that China was ramping up a nuclear arms race with the United States and Russia. According to Chinese state media, a number of their recent nuclear arms tests have “outpaced” the US. Between September 2014 and last December, China carried out around 200 laboratory experiments to simulate the extreme physics of a nuclear blast, the China Academy of Engineering Physics reported in a document released by the government earlier this year and reviewed by the South China Morning Post this month.
The US only carried out only 50 simulated tests between 2012 and 2017, which comes out to about 10 a year according to the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. These types of tests are typically carried out using high-powered gas guns which fire projectiles at weapons-grade materials in laboratories. Over the past three years, Chinese nuclear scientists have performed more such tests than their American counterparts have in 15 years. READ MORE