From 1951 to 1957, the United States military and the Atomic Energy Commission collaborated in a series of human radiation experiments called the Desert Rock exercises.
Troops were stationed at an encampment 27 miles from the Nevada Proving Grounds, where they were trained in dealing with radiation and the effects of nuclear explosions.
However, in retrospect, the “exercises” were fairly macabre, as several troops were inevitably subjected to an atomic airburst at a distance of only 7 miles. The image to the right shows U.S. troops kneeling down in the face of an atomic blast on November 1, 1951, during the first of the exercises (Desert Rock I).
Afterwards, the troops marched toward the atomic blast area, described by those in charge as “reasonably safe.”
They were then interviewed, and later examined.
Below is a video documenting the Desert Rock I exercise in 1951. The unnerving terror, if you will, begins at about 17:15.