Atomic Bomb Quotes (39 quotes)
Who Invented the Atomic Bomb?
Nuclear weapons possess enormous destructive power from nuclear fission or combined fission and fusion reactions. Building on scientific breakthroughs made during the s, the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada collaborated during World War II , in what was called the Manhattan Project , to counter the suspected Nazi German atomic bomb project. In August , two fission bombs were dropped on Japan , standing to date as the only use of nuclear weapons in combat. The Soviet Union started development shortly thereafter with their own atomic bomb project , and not long after that both countries developed even more powerful fusion weapons known as "hydrogen bombs". In the first decades of the 20th century, physics was revolutionised with developments in the understanding of the nature of atoms.
Leo Szilard and the Invention of the Atomic Bomb
Early in , the world's scientific community discovered that German physicists had learned the secrets of splitting a uranium atom. Fears soon spread over the possibility of Nazi scientists utilizing that energy to produce a bomb capable of unspeakable destruction. - It would be logical to assume that the discovery of fission preceded the invention of the atomic bomb. It would be normal also to expect that no single individual could really claim to be "the inventor", since the possibility sprang naturally from a physical process, and required the efforts of many thousands to bring it into existence.
Otto Hahn - was a German chemist and winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his discovery of nuclear fission. Hahn was a pioneer in the fields of radioactivity and radiochemistry and is widely regarded as the "father of nuclear chemistry. This discovery earned Hahn the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in , and led directly to the development of the atomic bomb. As a chemist, Hahn was initially reluctant to propose a revolutionary discovery in physics. Lise Meitner and her nephew, Otto Frisch, in Sweden, came to the same conclusion and were able to work out the basic mathematics of nuclear fission--the term that was coined by Frisch. Over the next few months, Meitner and Frisch published two articles discussing and experimentally confirming this hypothesis. It seems to me that what makes the science behind this discovery so remarkable is that it was achieved by purely chemical means.
Oppenheimer was the wartime head of the Los Alamos Laboratory and is among those who are credited with being the "father of the atomic bomb" for their role in the Manhattan Project , the World War II undertaking that developed the first nuclear weapons. The first atomic bomb was successfully detonated on July 16, , in the Trinity test in New Mexico. Oppenheimer later remarked that it brought to mind words from the Bhagavad Gita : "Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds. He used that position to lobby for international control of nuclear power to avert nuclear proliferation and a nuclear arms race with the Soviet Union. After provoking the ire of many politicians with his outspoken opinions during the Second Red Scare , he suffered the revocation of his security clearance in a much-publicized hearing in , and was effectively stripped of his direct political influence; he continued to lecture, write and work in physics. Nine years later, President John F. Kennedy awarded and Lyndon B.