The Manhattan Project

In partnership with the National Museum of Nuclear Science & HistoryNational Museum of Nuclear Science & History

Heavy Water

Thomas Mason's Interview

Cindy Kelly: I’m Cindy Kelly, Atomic Heritage Foundation. It is Thursday, April 21 [misspoke: April 19], 2018, and I’m in Columbus, Ohio with Thom Mason. My first question to him is to say his full name and spell it.

Thomas Mason: My name’s Thomas Mason. T-H-O-M-A-S M-A-S-O-N.

Kelly: The first thing I wanted to have you tell us about is yourself. Where you were born, what kind of education you had, and why you became a scientist.

Philippe Halban's Interview

Cindy Kelly: I am Cindy Kelly, and this is Thursday, December 14, 2017. I’m in Geneva, Switzerland, with Philippe Halban. My first question is for you to tell us your full name and spell it.

Philippe Halban: My name is Philippe Halban. I usually pronounce it the English way. It’s spelled the French way, with two p’s and an e at the end. My mother was French. That explains my first name. I’m delighted to be able to speak with you today about my father.

Kelly: Just one thing. Could you spell Halban?

Alexander Langsdorf's Interview

Stephane Groueff: Now it is recording Dr. Langsdorf. If you can tell me in a few words how you got connected with the project and where you came from.

Alexander Langsdorf: Oh, in the first place, as soon as I got my PhD at MIT, I went out to Berkeley as a national research fellow and started to work in Ernest Lawrence’s lab doing nuclear physics, which was a brand new field then, just opening up in 1938.

Groueff: ’38.

Lew Kowarski's Interview - Part 2

Stephane Groueff: One thing I don’t understand, and it’s a very ignorant question, but what was actually the difference between [Enrico] Fermi’s experiment in ’34 and [Otto] Hahn’s? Because, why do we say that Hahn was the first one, while Fermi also bombarded uranium?

Lew Kowarski: I don’t it’s true to say that Hahn was the first one.

Groueff: It’s not true.

Kowarski: I think it’s one of those simplifications—there are people who find them all right. I don’t.

Hugh Taylor's Interview

Sir Hugh Taylor: I had been requested by the British Government to find out certain things. They wanted, for example, to know whether they could use this thing and the General Electric Company made it available to them on the condition that their affiliate in England was entrusted with the responsibility of supplying it. It was the British Thomson-Houston Company [in] Rugby.

Then another job that I did for them, I got the Shell Oil Company in California to give me—

Stephane Groueff: Shell Oil.

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