History

History

This section provides an overview of the history of the Manhattan Project, the key organizations involved, the science behind the bomb, and more.
Haigerloch Nuclear Pile

German Atomic Bomb Project

“I don't believe a word of the whole thing,” declared Werner Heisenberg, the scientific head of the German nuclear program, after hearing the news that the United States had dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

Positron emitter detector (circa 1962) used to detect brain tumors.

Health Physics & Nuclear Medicine After the Manhattan Project

Today, millions of nuclear medicine procedures are performed in the United States every year, where the legacy of the Manhattan Project lives on in the treatment and visualization of disease.
Applications of x-rays in medicine from 1910

Health Physics & Nuclear Medicine Before the Manhattan Project

Shortly after its discovery, radiation became an invaluable part of medicine. However, people soon realized that radiation could also be extremely dangerous.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory workers turning in their pocket dosimeters (circa 1950)

Health Physics & Nuclear Medicine During the Manhattan Project

The Manhattan Project produced a large number of radioactive substances, and as a result scientists intensified research into the overlap of nuclear science and medicine.
The Enola Gay on August 5, 1945

Hiroshima and Nagasaki Bombing Timeline

A detailed timeline of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
The Great Artiste

Hiroshima and Nagasaki Missions - Planes & Crews

A list of the planes and the crews that flew on the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombing missions.
Painting commemorating Hispanos' work on the Manhattan Project at El Convento in Española.

Hispanos in Los Alamos

Although frequently omitted from official histories, Hispanos have served in pivotal positions at Los Alamos since its inception.
Former HUAC Chairman J. Parnell Thomas

HUAC and the Manhattan Project

A number of scientists associated with the Manhattan Project were eventually investigated by the House Un-American Activities Committee.
Operation at Oak Ridge Hospital, 1944

Human Radiation Experiments

Between April 1945 and July 1947, eighteen subjects were injected with plutonium, six with uranium, five with polonium, and at least one with americium in order to better understand the effects of radioactive materials on the human body.

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