Timeline of the Manhattan Project

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The Manhattan Project was a research and development project that produced the first atomic bombs during World War II. It was led by the United States with the support of the United Kingdom and Canada. From 1942 to 1946, the project was under the direction of Major General Leslie Groves of the US Army Corps of Engineers. The Army component of the project was designated the Manhattan District; "Manhattan" gradually became the codename for the entire project. Along the way, the project absorbed its earlier British counterpart, Tube Alloys. The Manhattan Project began modestly in 1939, but grew to employ more than 130,000 people and cost nearly US$2 billion (about $28 billion in 2019 [1] dollars). Over 90% of the cost was for building factories and producing the fissionable materials, with less than 10% for development and production of the weapons. [2] [3]

Contents

Two types of atomic bombs were developed during the war. A relatively simple gun-type fission weapon was made using uranium-235, an isotope that makes up only 0.7 percent of natural uranium. Since it is chemically identical to the most common isotope, uranium-238, and has almost the same mass, it proved difficult to separate. Three methods were employed for uranium enrichment: electromagnetic, gaseous and thermal. Most of this work was performed at Oak Ridge, Tennessee. In parallel with the work on uranium was an effort to produce plutonium. Reactors were constructed at Oak Ridge and Hanford, Washington, in which uranium was irradiated and transmuted into plutonium. The plutonium was then chemically separated from the uranium. The gun-type design proved impractical to use with plutonium so a more complex implosion-type nuclear weapon was developed in a concerted design and construction effort at the project's principal research and design laboratory in Los Alamos, New Mexico.

The following is a timeline of the Manhattan Project. It includes a number of events prior to the official formation of the Manhattan Project, and a number of events after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, until the Manhattan Project was formally replaced by the Atomic Energy Commission in 1947.

Los Alamos Laboratory director Robert Oppenheimer (left), Manhattan Project director Major General Leslie Groves (center) and University of California president Robert Gordon Sproul (right) at the ceremony to present the laboratory with the Army-Navy "E" Award in October 1945 Army-Navy E Award.jpg
Los Alamos Laboratory director Robert Oppenheimer (left), Manhattan Project director Major General Leslie Groves (center) and University of California president Robert Gordon Sproul (right) at the ceremony to present the laboratory with the Army-Navy "E" Award in October 1945
Operators at their calutron control panels at Y-12. Gladys Owens, the woman seated in the foreground, did not know what she had been involved with until seeing this photo in a public tour of the facility fifty years later. Y12 Calutron Operators.jpg
Operators at their calutron control panels at Y-12. Gladys Owens, the woman seated in the foreground, did not know what she had been involved with until seeing this photo in a public tour of the facility fifty years later.
Replica of the Uranverein's German experimental nuclear reactor at Haigerloch captured by the Alsos Mission Haigerloch-nuclear-reactor ArM.JPG
Replica of the Uranverein 's German experimental nuclear reactor at Haigerloch captured by the Alsos Mission
Explosive stack of the 100 Ton Test Trinity Test - 100 Ton Test - High Explosive Stack 002.jpg
Explosive stack of the 100 Ton Test
Video of the Trinity nuclear test
Aircraft of the 509th Composite Group that took part in the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Left to right: backup plane, The Great Artiste, Enola Gay Agnew HiroshimaAircraft.jpg
Aircraft of the 509th Composite Group that took part in the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Left to right: backup plane, The Great Artiste, Enola Gay
Casing of a Fat Man nuclear bomb, painted like the one dropped on Nagasaki Fat Man (National Museum USAF).jpg
Casing of a Fat Man nuclear bomb, painted like the one dropped on Nagasaki
Aerial view of the Operation Crossroads Able mushroom cloud rising from the lagoon with the Bikini Island visible in the background Operation Crossroads - Able 001.jpg
Aerial view of the Operation Crossroads Able mushroom cloud rising from the lagoon with the Bikini Island visible in the background

1939

1940

1941

1942

1943

1944

1945

1946

1947

See also

Notes

  1. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–" . Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  2. Nichols 1987, pp. 34–35.
  3. "Atomic Bomb Seen as Cheap at Price". Edmonton Journal. 7 August 1945. p. 1. Retrieved 1 January 2012.
  4. "The Calutron Girls". SmithDRay. Retrieved 22 June 2011.
  5. Beck, Alfred M, et al., United States Army in World War II: The Technical Services – The Corps of Engineers: The War Against Germany, 1985 Chapter 24, "Into the Heart of Germany", p. 558
  6. Rhodes 1986, p. 307.
  7. Rhodes 1986, p. 310.
  8. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 17.
  9. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 20.
  10. Rhodes 1986, p. 332.
  11. Gowing 1964, pp. 40–43.
  12. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 18.
  13. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 31.
  14. Zachary 1997, p. 112.
  15. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 27.
  16. Rhodes 1986, pp. 383–384.
  17. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 37.
  18. Roosevelt, Franklin D. (June 28, 1941). "Executive Order 8807 Establishing the Office of Scientific Research and Development". The American Presidency Project. Retrieved June 28, 2011.
  19. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 41.
  20. Gowing 1964, p. 76.
  21. Rhodes 1986, pp. 368–369.
  22. 1 2 Hewlett & Anderson 1962, pp. 43–44.
  23. Gowing 1964, p. 106.
  24. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, pp. 44–46.
  25. Yergey, Alfred L.; Yergey, A. Karl (1997-09-01). "Preparative Scale Mass Spectrometry: A Brief History of the Calutron". Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry. 8 (9): 943–953. doi:10.1016/S1044-0305(97)00123-2. ISSN   1044-0305.
  26. "Lawrence and His Laboratory: Episode: The Calutron". www2.lbl.gov. Retrieved 2019-07-22.
  27. Rhodes 1986, pp. 388–389.
  28. Williams 1960, p. 3.
  29. Williams 1960, p. 4.
  30. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 53.
  31. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 49.
  32. Rhodes 1986, p. 399.
  33. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 75.
  34. Jones 1985, p. 126.
  35. Hoddeson et al. 1993, pp. 42–47.
  36. Gowing 1964, pp. 437–438.
  37. Jones 1985, p. 43.
  38. Jones 1985, p. 75.
  39. Jones 1985, p. 77.
  40. Jones 1985, p. 81.
  41. Jones 1985, p. 78.
  42. Jones 1985, p. 83.
  43. Jones 1985, p. 84.
  44. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 112.
  45. 1 2 Jones 1985, p. 110.
  46. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 152.
  47. 1 2 Jones 1985, p. 88.
  48. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 69.
  49. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 66.
  50. Nichols 1987, p. 115.
  51. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 130.
  52. Groves 1962, pp. 26,27.
  53. Nichols 1987, p. 99,100.
  54. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 79.
  55. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 380.
  56. Nichols 1987, p. 101.
  57. Gowing 1964, p. 171.
  58. Jones 1985, p. 241.
  59. Rhodes 1986, p. 499.
  60. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 211.
  61. Rhodes 1995, p. 103.
  62. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 157.
  63. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 164.
  64. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 238.
  65. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 202.
  66. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 240.
  67. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 245.
  68. "Explosion at Navy Yard". Manhattan Project Heritage Preservation Association. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  69. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 269.
  70. Jones 1985, p. 221.
  71. Goudsmit 1947, pp. 69–79.
  72. 1 2 3 Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 271.
  73. Jones 1985, p. 521.
  74. Nichols 1987, p. 171.
  75. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 300.
  76. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 310.
  77. Rhodes 1986, p. 609.
  78. Jones 1985, p. 528.
  79. Williams 1960, p. 534.
  80. 1 2 3 Jones 1985, p. 529.
  81. Jones 1985, pp. 532–533.
  82. Williams 1960, p. 550.
  83. Rhodes 1986, p. 670.
  84. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 377.
  85. Rhodes 1986, p. 690.
  86. Rhodes 1986, p. 691.
  87. Rhodes 1986, p. 692.
  88. Jones 1985, pp. 536–538.
  89. Jones 1985, pp. 538–541.
  90. Jones 1985, p. 561.
  91. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, pp. 405–406.
  92. McLaughlin, Thomas P.; Monahan, Shean P.; Pruvost, Norman L.; Frolov, Vladimir V.; Ryazanov, Boris G.; Sviridov, Victor I. (May 2000). "A Review of Criticality Accidents" (PDF). Los Alamos, New Mexico: Los Alamos National Laboratory. pp. 74–75. LA-13638. Retrieved April 21, 2010.
  93. 1 2 Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 624.
  94. 1 2 Jones 1985, p. 544.
  95. Hoddeson et al. 1993, p. 401.
  96. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, pp. 480–481.
  97. Zeilig, Martin (August–September 1995). "Louis Slotin And 'The Invisible Killer'". The Beaver. 75 (4): 20–27. Archived from the original on 16 May 2008. Retrieved 28 April 2008.
  98. 1 2 Hewlett & Anderson 1962, pp. 580–581.
  99. Jones 1985, p. 596.
  100. Hewlett & Anderson 1962, p. 641.
  101. Jones 1985, p. 600.

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