The First War of Physics: The Secret History of the Atom Bomb, 1939-1949

The First War of Physics: The Secret History of the Atom Bomb, 1939-1949

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An epic story of science and technology at the very limits of human understanding: the monumental race to build the first atomic weapons. Rich in personality, action, confrontation, and deception, The First War of Physics is the first fully realized popular account of the race to build humankind's most destructive weapon. The book draws on declassified material, such as MI6's Farm Hall transcripts, coded soviet messages cracked by American cryptographers in the Venona project, and interpretations by Russian scholars of documents from the soviet archives. Jim Baggott weaves these threads into a dramatic narrative that spans ten historic years, from the discovery of nuclear fission in 1939 to the aftermath of 'Joe-1, a€™ August 1949's first Soviet atomic bomb test. Why did physicists persist in developing the atomic bomb, despite the devastation that it could bring? Why, despite having a clear head start, did Hitler's physicists fail? Could the soviets have developed the bomb without spies like Klaus Fuchs or Donald Maclean? Did the allies really plot to assassinate a key member of the German bomb program? Did the physicists knowingly inspire the arms race? The First War of Physics is a grand and frightening story of scientific ambition, intrigue, and genius: a tale barely believable as fiction, which just happens to be historical fact.He listed four questions concerning element 94 that he wanted answers to, and requested an update on the work being carried out with cyclotrons. ... Special Branch of the US Armya#39;s Military Intelligence Division, grew concerned that Moscow and Berlin might seek to negotiate a separate peace. ... Each page of the pad consisted of 60 fivedigit random number groups which constituted the encryption key.

Title:The First War of Physics: The Secret History of the Atom Bomb, 1939-1949
Author:Jim Baggott
Publisher:Pegasus Books - 2011-08-15


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