The Atomic Bomb

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The Atomic Bomb "Nuclear Energy" Do you know what nuclear weapons are? People prior to the 1930's never stopped to consider the importance of nuclear weapons. Neither did the US until the 1930's, when they entered the race to build the first nuclear weapon.

The US Entered the race in 1938 right after the discovery of nuclear fission. There was a great importance for entering the race. Hitler had had rein over Germany since 1933. The US was afraid Hitler would use his power and his nuclear knowledge to threaten the US The answer to this fear was the Manhattan Project (Beyer 22).

The Manhattan Project is were most of the research and construction ?the first atomic bombs took place. The basic research for the nuclear weaponry was done at these universities: Columbia, Princeton, Berkeley, and Chicago, from 1941-1942 (Beyer 33).

During some basic research at Berkeley, Glenn Seaborg and Emilio Sergr? discovered that plutonium made an excellent source of fuel for an atomic explosion.

(Plutonium is a by-product of a fission chain reaction, in which it is chemically separated from uranium (Beyer 33).) Eventually all of the nuclear physicist working on the project were moved to a central laboratory: Chicago Metallurgical Laboratory or Met lab. Enric Fermi's team came from Columbia University to continue their studies of chain reactions. Glenn Seaborg came from Berkeley also to continue his studies (Beyer 33).

Enrico Fermi created a figure of the quantity of uranium (critical mass) and other materials, which are needed to create a slow neutron chain reaction Beyer 33). To create an explosion this chain reaction must happen.

A neutron invades u-235 nucleus that forms an unstable u-236 which splits into two new elements. These two elements are slowed by a water or graphite moderator, so they can be captured...