Classification: Terrestrial technology

Creator: Reed Richards

User/Possessors: Reed Richards, Sue Storm

First Appearance: Fantastic Four I#22 (January, 1964)

Powers/Abilities/Functions: The Nuclear Measuring Device was a piece of test equipment used to ascertain the degree of the Invisible Girl's power. It consisted of a helmet which was connected with cables to the main unit.

(Fantastic Four I#22) - Reed Richards was testing Sue Storm's invisibility with the Nuclear Measuing Device. The initial readings of the device indicated to Reed that Sue had greater power than she suspected. Reed removed the helmet from Sue's head and told her he would study the results.

  But just then, the Thing and the Human Torch (Johnny Storm) were having one of their usual squabbles. The Thing grabbed a fire extinguisher and sprayed it at the Torch, but he unintentionally had it aimed in Sue's direction. For the first time, Sue instinctively formed a force field to protect herself from the chemical foam -- Reed theorized that radiation from the Nuclear Measuring Device must have increased Sue's power. As a test of her new ability, Reed told Sue to form a thicker force field, which held up against the strength of the Thing and the flame of the Human Torch. Reed suspected that there were still other things that Sue could do with her powers.

  Shortly thereafter, Sue manifested a third power -- the ability to make other people and things invisible.

  Sue's new powers would later prove instrumental for the team in defeating the Mole Man when they faced him again.

Comments: Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.

When the Invisible Girl was first introduced in Fantastic Four I#1, she only had the power to turn herself invisible, and for the first twenty-one issues (and the first Annual) of the series, that's all she could do. But this limited power gave Sue a bad reputation among some fans of the book, who often wrote letters complaining that she was useless to the team and should be replaced, so her power-boost was done as an attempt to make her a more valuable member of the group.

Although Reed suspected that radiation from the Nuclear Measuring Device gave Sue her increased powers, I think that she probably had them all along -- maybe just hearing that she was capable of doing more gave Sue the confidence to try to use her power in new ways.

Profile by John Kaminski


The Nuclear Measuring Device has no known connection to:

images: (without ads)
Fantastic Four I#22, p1, pan1 (Sue wearing helmet)

p2, pan1 (test completed, Reed removing helmet from Sue)

Fantastic Four I#22 (January, 1964) - Stan Lee (writer/editor), Jack Kirby (pencils), George Roussos (inks)

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Last Updated: 06/07/04

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