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"I suspect that religion is a necessary evil in the childhood of our particular species. And that's one of the interesting things about contact with other intelligences: we could see what role, if any, religion plays in their development."
- Arthur C. Clarke

Planet Buster  
  A bomb so powerful it could destroy a planet.  

This is the earliest reference I know about.

"One of our largest space bombers was over the planet. The commander warned the Aldebarans that unless they agreed to surrender the diamonds at once, he would drop a planet buster - that’s a Class-A oxygen bomb. The Aldebaran’s return message, expressed in the crudest possible language, told the commander what he could do with the bomb.”
From Assignment to Aldebaran, by Kendall Foster Crossen.
Published by Thrilling Wonder Stories in 1953
Additional resources -

The reference to a "oxygen bomb" is a satiric reference to the hydrogen bomb.

I first encountered this term in Frank Herbert's quirky but excellent 1972 novel The Godmakers:

We'll take up a tight orbit. Out beyond us will be five transports full of I-A marines plus a Class IX Monitor with one planet-buster. You're calling the shots, God help you! First, we have to know if they've taken the Delphinus , and if so, where it is. Next, we want to know how warlike these goons are. Can we deal with them? Are they too bloodthirsty? What's their potential?

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Assignment to Aldebaran
  More Ideas and Technology by Kendall Foster Crossen
  Tech news articles related to Assignment to Aldebaran
  Tech news articles related to works by Kendall Foster Crossen

Planet Buster-related news articles:
  - Planet Buster Dead Star Vaporizes Mini-Planet

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