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Heisenberg and the Nazi atomic bomb project : a study in German culture

Author: Paul Lawrence Rose
Publisher: Berkeley, Calif. : University of California Press, ©1998.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Digging deep into the archival record among formerly secret technical reports, Rose examines early thinking about the atomic bomb not only on the German side but also among Allied scientists. He finds that the early history of fission bomb physics had no shortage of false starts and fumbles in both camps. But, whereas the Allied physicists' ideas crystallized into a realistic prospect for a bomb toward the end of  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
History
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Rose, Paul Lawrence.
Heisenberg and the Nazi atomic bomb project.
Berkeley, Calif. : University of California Press, ©1998
(DLC) 97018143
(OCoLC)37268211
Named Person: Werner Heisenberg; Werner Heisenberg; Werner Heisenberg; Werner Heisenberg
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Paul Lawrence Rose
ISBN: 9780520927162 0520927168 0585321906 9780585321905 9780520210776 0520210778
OCLC Number: 45844561
Description: 1 online resource (xx, 352 pages) : portrait
Contents: Preface: why Heisenberg? --
A note on historical terminology of the first nuclear age, 1939-45 --
Prologue: the Heisenberg problem: deception and self-deception --
pt. I. History: the Heisenberg version and its critics. The Heisenberg version and its first critic, 1945-49 --
Elaborating the Heisenberg version, 1945-76 --
Criticizing the version, 1948-94 --
pt. II. Science: conceptions and misconceptions of physics. The atomic bomb problem, 1939 --
The Frisch-Peierls solution, 1940 --
Heisenberg's false foundations, 1939 --
The bomb as reactor: the u[subscript 235] bomb misconceived, 1940 --
The reactor as bomb: explosive reactor-bombs, 1940 --
The reactor and the bomb: plutonium, 1940-41 --
The reactor-bomb patent and the Heisenberg/Bohr drawing, 1941 --
The Weapons Research Office report of 1942: plutonium and the reactor-bomb --
The two conferences of 1942: loose details, non-decisions, and pineapples --
Reactor-bombs, plutonium bombs, and the SS: the report of activities of 1944 --
The truth: Farm Hall, August 1945 --
pt. III. Culture: German patriotism, German morality, and the truth of physics --
The German context: unpolitical politics --
The unpolitical Heisenberg: patriot and physicist, 1918-33 --
Collusion and compromise under Hitler, 1933-37 --
The Himmler connection: Heisenberg's "honor," 1937-44 --
Justifying Nazi victory, 1941-45 --
Decency and indecency at Farm Hall, 1945 --
Heisenberg's peculiar way, 1945-48.
Responsibility: Paul Lawrence Rose.
More information:

Abstract:

Digging deep into the archival record among formerly secret technical reports, Rose examines early thinking about the atomic bomb not only on the German side but also among Allied scientists. He finds that the early history of fission bomb physics had no shortage of false starts and fumbles in both camps. But, whereas the Allied physicists' ideas crystallized into a realistic prospect for a bomb toward the end of 1940. Heisenberg's basic misconceptions persisted, influencing the German leaders not to push for atomic weapons. In fact, Heisenberg never had to face the moral problem of whether he should design an actual bomb for the Nazi regime. Rose's exploration of the German mentality that made it quite reasonable for "unpolitical" scientists to support the regime in power, whatever its form, shows the extent to which Heisenberg and others could devote themselves to research they regarded as patriotic.

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