One-Million-Liter Test Sphere

Tucked away at a corner of Fort Detrick in Frederick, Maryland, dwarfed by buildings on three, sides stands a relic of Cold War—a humongous steel sphere 40 feet across with volume of 1 million liters. For most of its existence, the sphere remained hidden enclosed under a large wood and metal cube. But the timber has now disintegrated away revealing this extraordinary contraption with a sinister past.

Fort Detrick was the center of the US biological weapons program from 1943 to 1969. Much of the tests involving aerosols of infectious agents was conducted inside this steel sphere, lovingly referred to as the Eight Ball.

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