1942 Nov 3

1942 Nov 3

Glenn Seaborg reports that due to plutonium's high alpha activity, slight amounts of light element impurities can cause a serious problem with neutron emission from alpha -> n reactions. This issue caused major concern with many project leaders, including Leslie Groves and James B. Conant, not only due to its own significance, but because it raised apprehension about the impact of other unexplored phenomena. (This issue later became moot due to the problems with Pu-240 contamination). Later in the month the Lewis Committee is formed to review progress and make recommendations.

Date Range: 
1942CE Nov 3rd