Atomic Weapons Detection Recognition and Estimation of Yield
Atomic Weapons Detection Recognition and Estimation of Yield known by the accronym AWDREY was a desk mounted automatic detection instrument, located at the twenty five
Royal Observer Corpscontrols, across the United Kingdomand Northern Ireland, during the Cold Warthat would have detected any nuclear explosions and indicated the estimated size in megatons.
Mounted in a three foot high steel cabinet the instrument operated by measuring the level of
Electromagnetic pulse(EMP) generated by any nuclear explosion. The instruments were in operation 24/7/365 between 1955 and 1992 and tested daily by wholetime ROC officers. AWDREY regularly reacted to the EMP from lightning strikes during thunderstorms. [ [http://www.jimaitken.com/warmon.html AWDREY and other instruments can be seen here] ] Additional AWDREY instruments were also installed at each of the Regional Government Heaquarters (RGHQs) and at UKRAOC at RAF High Wycombe.
AWDREY was designed and built by the
Atomic Weapons Establishmentat Aldermastonand tested for performance and accuracy on real nuclear explosions at the 1957 Kiritimati (or Christmas Island) nuclear bomb test (after being mounted onboard a ship).
Royal Observer Corps reports following a reading on AWDREY were prefixed with the codeword "TOCSIN BANG".
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