Trivia

Hard

In 1960 The NORAD Early Warning System Confused What As A Full-Scale Soviet Nuclear Attack?

Migrating Monarchs
A Flock of Sparrows
The Moon
A USPS Cargo Jet

Answer: The Moon

During the Cold War, there were more than a few terrifying false alarms in both the U.S. and Soviet-run air defense systems. Among all the false alarms, one in particular had a rather enormous culprit: the Moon.

How could the Moon be mistaken for an onslaught of missiles headed toward North America? One of NORAD’s radar stations positioned on the far edge of Greenland had, in a truly bizarre fluke, caught a wave of interference from the Moon rising over Norway and the system had interpreted the huge signature as a swath of missiles coming from Russia (and automatically issued a high-certainty alert remotely to NORAD and Washington).

Although the false alarm generated by the Moon was quickly identified as false (it did seem odd, after all, that the Soviets would launch a massive nuclear strike on the U.S. when their leader was in New York City at the time meeting with the United Nations), the misstep of the system was pivotal in pushing the Air Force and NORAD to develop better systems that weren’t prone to confusing a lovely moonrise with a swarm of missiles.

Trivia

Hard

Douglas Adams Originally Wrote For Which Sci-Fi Series?

Trivia

Hard

What Was The World’s First Handheld Electronic Game?

Trivia

Hard

The Motherboards Inside Xbox One X Units Have A Hidden Mark Depicting?

Trivia

Hard

ABC Interrupted Regularly Scheduled Programming To Announce The Reintroduction Of What?

Trivia

Hard

The Outer Case Of The Atari Jaguar Game Console Lived On As A?

Trivia

Hard

Ethernet Superseded Which Network Technology?

Trivia

Hard

In Addition To Smoke Bombs, Batarangs, And Grappling Hooks, Batman’s Utility Belt Also Contains?

Trivia

Hard

Which U.S. State Has The Largest Amount Of Land Set Aside For Native Americans?

Trivia

Hard

The Night Sky In The Movie Titanic Was Corrected At Whose Behest?

Trivia

Hard

The Largest Jellyfish Species In The World Is The?