killing mechanism. Alas, in 1945, such a mechanism was created. The atomic bomb was created after many years of the study of atoms. Finally, a way to split the atoms was born. Germany was the first to try, using uranium-235 to make a bomb. They discovered nuclear fission in late 1938. Efforts failed, but were picked up by the United States. Albert Einstein, although credited as the father of the atomic bomb, only lent support to begin American development(www.atomicarchive.com?). As it was to be, Robert Oppenheimer was the father of the atomic bomb. He directed the laboratory at Los Alamos, where the atomic bomb was designed and built. The whole development in the making of an atomic bomb was called the Manhattan Project.. The first bomb was tested on July 16, 1945 in New Mexico. The end result was the dropping of two atomic bombs by the United States. on Hiroshima.People had different opinions on the bomb, but they may have come to one conclusion had they known about the history of the atomic bomb, how it was created, and the effects the bomb had in the economy.
Nuclear fission is the driving force behind the atomic bomb. Fission is a nuclear reaction where an atomic nucleus splits into fragments. Energy is expelled explosively and violently. One problem of splitting atoms is finding an element whose atoms are easily split. Uranium, a heavy metal, was found to be splitable because of its’ unusually large atoms, which made it hard for them to hold together firmly. There are two isotopes of Uranium, being U-235 and U-238. U238 has atoms that can be split, therefore it was deemed “fissionable”(micahlee.fsn.net?). The process of disintegrating is accelerated by
a chain reaction. One split atoms explodes, causing a chain reaction as the force splits the other neutrons. When split, U235 gives off heat and Gamma radiation, which is the most lethal and powerful form of radioactivity. Plutonium can also be used in making atomic bombs. Because Plutonium is not found naturally, it must be made from Uranium. This is done by processing U-238 through a nuclear reactor.
Atomic energy was not thought be a feasible weapon until 1939. The Germans tried to use this energy, as did the United States and Russia. Americans spent billions of dollars an the Manhattan Project, headed by J. Robert Oppenheimer. This project was held in Los Alamos, New Mexico. Atomic energy was created by uranium. The issue was how to extract Uranium-235 from Uranium-238. Because of the similar chemical makeup of U-235 and U-238, this was very difficult to manage. It took several Columbia University scientist to solve this problem. Only mechanical methods were found to separate U-235 and U-238. Later, Ernest O. Lawrence devised a process of magnetic separation. Gaseous diffusion was also implemented by associates of Columbia University. After many years of devising a building, the first atomic bomb was sent off on July 16, 1945 in Northern New Mexico. The bomb produced a 19-kiliton explosion. A white blaze came from the bomb and covered the sky before turning orange. An atomic fireball shot upwards at 360 feet per second. A mushroom cloud formed as the color turned red(see figure 1). Beneath the cloud, the soil was fragments of radioactive glass. The blast could be seen as far away as 120 miles.. Although this explosion was spectacular, the deadly force of an atomic bomb was shown when the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima during World
War II. The bomb destroyed the city on August 6, 1945. Then again on August 9th , a bomb dropped on Nagasaki. The devastation was widespread and quick. The economy was utterly in shambles.
The atomic bomb was created to be mass destructive. This was self evident when the United States dropped two atomic bombs on Japan. This decision by Harry S. Truman is still doubted by people today. On August 6, 1945 the Enola Gay dropped an uranium bomb on Hiroshima(darter.fsn.net?). An amazing 66,000 people were killed and 69,000 people were injured(micahlee.fsn.net?). The blast measured ten kilotons . Within a two and a half mile radius, everything flammable was burned. Then on August 9th, a plutonium bomb rattled Nagasaki. Missing by a mile and a half, the blast leveled the city. Thirty-nine thousand were killed, 75,000 were injured. The blast was not the only threat. Radioactive material in the air killed many and made many people sick. It took many years to rebuild these cities. Not only the cities, but the whole lifestyle. The Japanese had to start all over, rebuilding from scratch. Some say the only good that came from the bombings was that it ended World War II(www.cesa10.k12.wi.us?). In this day, Hiroshima is working to be an “international city of peace and culture”(www.city.hiroshima.jp?). Many organizations were founded to help the victim’s families, and some still exist today.
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. Hiroshima and Nagasaki were the first cities destroyed by an atomic bomb, no doubt with reason.
Development of the bomb through the fission of Uranium and Plutonium has come a long way since 1945, and is still being experimented with to this day. 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. People that were not only contributing for personal gain, but for the pride of their country. Though the it is not used today, the atomic bomb is now known as one of the deadliest weapons known to man. And no one knows exactly what type of slaying device the country will come up with next, but rest assured it will be as magnificent and overpowering as the atomic bomb.