The development of the bomb began in 1955 at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico  and was based on the design of earlier products Mk.21 (eng. Mark 21 nuclear bomb) and Mk.46 (eng. B46 nuclear bomb). In March 1958, the US Air Force Strategic Command issued a request for the development of a new class C bomb (megaton yield, weighing less than 5 tons) to replace the Mk.41 bomb. One of the Mk.46 variants in 1959 began to be designated TX-53. The TX-53 product was apparently never tested, although its prototype, the TX-46 experimental charge, was detonated on June 28, 1958, as part of the Oak test (eng. Oak) of the first phase of Operation Hardtech, giving an output of energy in 8.9 Mt. Bombs of this type began to be gradually dismantled from the 1980s, but they remained in service until 1997.