Knowing how an atomic bomb is created, its' history and the effects it had on the economy could help people realize the reasoning behind such a bomb. These bombs were made for a purpose. Robert Oppenheimer was the father of the atomic bomb, although Albert Einstein received a lot of credit for his work with the startup of atomic bombs. The Manhattan Project, based in Los Alamos, was a very keen organization that helped the United States become a world power. Over one hundred thousand workers took in this project.
Albert Einstein, Edward Teller, Leo Szilard and the rest of his colleagues wrote a letter in August 1939 to warn the United States that Germany was researching and developing nuclear weapons. They were afraid that once Germany finished building the bomb, they would use it on the United States. (Cayton, Perry, Winkler, 1995, pg. 786) When President Franklin Delano Roosevelt received the letter, he was both amazed and scared. He was amazed that science could make such a devastating weapon, a weapon that could destroy an entire city.
Once the bomb was tested, the United States had to decide whether it should be used and if so, where? Then there was the process of dropping the bomb. The Manhattan Project was overall one of the highest and most significant projects ever done in the United States.2 The United States government was shocked by the news of German scientists discovering nuclear fission. The news came to the United States from Albert Einstein. Einstein found out the nuclear fission information from a German physicist named Leo Szilard.
Maybe the first step towards the atomic bomb was when Einstein sent his fabled letter to President Roosevelt. Regardless of when exactly these events started, they would lead to the creation of one of the most dangerous weapons to ever be conceived. World renowned physicists, such as Enrico Fermi and Leo Szilard, would help build the atomic bomb and vastly improve America’s understanding of science with their inventions, including the Chicago Pile-1. Bigger and greater experiments were then done by the Uranium Committee and the famed Manhattan Project, all building up to the fatal day of the bombings on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. These attacks would rock the foundations of war, as it changed all previous parameters.
Manhattan Project II. The Race for the Bomb The theoretical possibility that an explosion could be brought about by atomic fission became known in 1939, the year that war broke out in Europe. Scientists discovered then that uranium atoms can fission when struck by neutrons to split other atoms in a chain reaction, releasing large amounts of energy. Two Hungarian physicists who had recently emigrated to the United States, Leo Szilard and Eugene Wigner, alerted the US government to the possibility of an atomic bomb. Along with Albert Einstein, they wrote a letter to President Roosevelt warning that Nazi Germany might also be working towards a uranium bomb; many of the important discoveries in atomic physics had been made at German universities.
The development of the Atomic bomb is the most impressive scientific development in history. The development of the bomb began with scientists working on independent projects, which climaxed with the Manhattan Project, and merged full strength with the testing at Trinity. The background and history of the science that lead up to the Manhattan Project is important because it incorporates many ideas from prior decades. The Manhattan Project is the largest demonstration of the scientific community coming together ever. Hundreds and thousands of people and communities came together for one common goal, to end World War II.
The Americans' fear was that the Nazis would shape it into a weapon of mass destruction. Germany also had in its grasp two materials critical to its development, heavy water and uranium. They were available in abundance only in Norway and Czechoslovakia, both under Nazi control. On August 1939, a German-American physicist named Albert Einstein sent a letter to U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt that described this discovery and warned of its potential development by other nations. This letter was written by Leo Szilard, Eugene Wigner and Edward Teller.
However, more important influences of this project can be seen following the detonation of the first bombs. The emergence of the United States as a world superpower following World War II, the tensions derived from the arms race during the Cold War, and current day struggles over the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty are all effects derived from the Manhattan Project. According to the US Department of Energy, President Roosevelt provided a government organization and mild funding for uranium research, following the release of information that Germany may have the capabilities of building an atomic weapon. The fear of an atomic weapon falling into the hands of Nazi Germany led to fear of the annihilation of the Western World. The Manhattan Project was escalated following the attack on Pearl Harbor, and Roosevelt gave the tentative okay to build an atomic weapon.
When the atoms split it releases energy and if you put billions of these atoms together it could start a chain reaction and make a massive explosion. Three physicists leo Szilard, Eugene Wigner, and Edward Teller, believed that a nuclear weapon was possible and germany already started working on one. They thought that this was very important to the war effort so important that the president, Franklin D. Roosevelt has to know about it. However they were not well known enough to get the attention of the president so they got the famous theoretical physicist Albert Einstein. Albert Einstein signed the letter and gave it to Roosevelt and he said that this needed action so Leo Szilard asked for six thousand dollars worth of materials to produce a nuclear chain reaction.
British and US scientists concentrated on fission of U-235 which would lead to a new element of mass U-239 an atomic number of 94 in which would lead them to discover neptunium #93 and plutonium #94 which was based off the finding of the uranium element (“Outline History of Nuclear Energy” 1). Harnessing energy from this was the main intention in 1945 (“Outline History of Nuclear Energy” 1). The atomic bomb development most focused on through 1939 to 1945. The Manhattan Project was the creation and testing of the first atomic bomb, 1942-1945 (“Nuclear History Timeline” 1). The first atomic device was successfully tested in New Mexico on July 16, 1945 (“Outline History of Nuclear Energy” 1).