Stop-Motion Video Shows How to Take Apart a Nuclear Missile

| Apr. 08, 2019

The Outrider Foundation has released a new stop-motion animation demonstrating the steps to take apart a nuclear-armed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile. Sébastien Philippe, a Stanton Nuclear Security Postdoctoral Fellow in the Belfer Center’s International Security Program and Managing the Atom Project, served as a technical advisor on the film.

According to Outrider’s Managing Director for Nuclear Policy, Tara Drozdenko, the organization hopes to remove some of the mystery surrounding nuclear weapons, and to help the public get involved in decisions about the future of the US nuclear arsenal—such as supporting a no first use policy.  “These are just machines that we have built, and our policies surrounding them are just decisions that we have made.  We can decide to take them apart, and we can decide that the U.S. should never again be the first to use nuclear weapons in a conflict,” said Drozdenko.

"What I like about this project is how it illustrates that dismantling nuclear weapons is not a technical problem, but a political one," said Philippe. “It is an important message for empowering the public in an area that is often hidden behind expert discourses. The choice of dismantling a Minuteman III missile was particularly important. It is a weapon that remains on hair-trigger alert, ready to be launched at any moment. And because these weapons are sitting ducks for enemy missiles, the policy is to employ them before losing them. Getting rid of them would go a long way into reducing the risks of nuclear war.”

The film can be viewed at or


Film Credits:

Directed by Smriti Keshari

Stop Motion Animation by Maxwell Sorensen

Voiceover by Margaret Aery

Production Managers: Margaret Aery, Amanda Yogendran

Special thanks to our technical advisors, Sébastien Philippe and Ferenc Dalnoki-Veress


Press Contact:

Tara Drozdenko, Ph.D.

Managing Director, Nuclear Policy, Outrider Foundation

834 E Washington Ave Ste 333, Madison, WI 53705 | (608) 237-3631


The Outrider Foundation is an operating foundation that educates the public about the challenges of climate change and nuclear weapons. Outrider envisions a world where people live without fear of climate-induced catastrophe or nuclear war. Outrider's interactive features and in-depth articles help individuals learn what's at stake and how they can be a part of the solution.

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:Stop-Motion Video Shows How to Take Apart a Nuclear Missile.” News, , April 8, 2019.