Kurchatov. Part 2. Time For Nuclear Reactions

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Kurchatov. Part 2. Time For Nuclear Reactions
Kurchatov. Part 2. Time For Nuclear Reactions

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Kurchatov. Part 2. Time for nuclear reactions

A year before the war, Academician Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky, with whom Igor Kurchatov studied at Taurida University in the early 1920s, receives a letter from the United States from his son George. Attached to the letter was a clipping from the New York Times with an article entitled "Science has discovered a huge source of atomic energy." It talked about the prospects for the use of atomic energy, including the manufacture of an atomic bomb. “Dad, don't be late,” Georgy added by hand. Vernadsky knew that they were already late …

Part 1. Demiurge of the core

I am happy that I was born in Russia and devoted my life to the atomic science of the great Land of Soviets.

I. Kurchatov

Almost 40 years before the start of World War II, nuclear physics developed out of scientific interest and is international in nature. Scientists from different countries of the world meet at congresses, work together at the institutes of progressive research, move from country to country, exchange news and discoveries, and conduct private correspondence. Politicians do not yet see the use of new developments in the military-industrial complex.

People with developed properties of the sound vector do not just live ahead of the curve, they use the methods they know to catch the approach of the future and often predetermine it with their discoveries in different fields of science.

A year before the war, Academician Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky, with whom Igor Kurchatov studied at the Taurida University in the early 1920s, receives a letter from the United States from his son George. Attached to the letter was a clipping from the New York Times with an article entitled "Science has discovered a huge source of atomic energy." It talked about the prospects for the use of atomic energy, including the manufacture of an atomic bomb. “Dad, don't be late,” George added by hand. Vernadsky knew that they were already late.

Professor of Russian history Georgy Vladimirovich, while living in the United States, collected materials for his father, an academician, on nuclear physics and rocketry that appeared in the Western press. This was not a secret for the NKVD and was even encouraged, since such a neutral source did not arouse suspicion.

On the eve of World War II, there were many discussions and scientific publications on the subject of nuclear decay and energy release. Suddenly, publications stop, articles in magazines disappear.

Scientists who have closely followed these publications are beginning to guess that the topic is classified. This means a breakthrough has occurred, and the completed research can be used as a weapon.

They are classified after the escape from Nazi Germany to America of several German scientists, who told that the country was developing developments that could lead to the creation of a powerful new weapon of mass destruction.

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Physicists do not sow, do not reap

Scientists have an anal-sound ligament, often supplemented by cutaneous and visual vectors. Carrying out research in the most difficult conditions, nuclear physicists used their vector properties to the limit of their possibilities: maximum concentration in sound, anal-visual memory and ability for analytics, skin engineering enterprise.

The funds allocated from the state budget for science in the USSR were limited. Kurchatov's employees showed wonders of ingenuity, constructing the devices of record sensitivity necessary for experiments from improvised means: a hand drill and reagents from a photo accessories store.

The urethral has a place at the top of Olympus by nature itself, and therefore skin envy and rivalry are absolutely alien. Kurchatov graciously accepted the genius of his comrades. For a person who is truly talented in organizing processes, what he was, it is much more important to gather geniuses under his wing than to swing his own ambitions.

Not without complaints from the local authorities, dissatisfied with the work of physicists who do not produce tangible benefits.

“Some conservative-minded people considered it to be a science 'cut off from life', 'not bringing production benefits.' AF Ioffe, as they say, at the time of the arrival of various examiners sometimes sent IV Kurchatov from the institute and kept mum about the work "out of touch with practice". I myself have heard at meetings attacks on scientists "who do not want to help production" and are engaged in "useless" nuclear physics. Fortunately, such judgments were not shared by the Soviet government, and a strong school of physicists grew up in our country back in the 30s. (from the memoirs of K.I.Schelkina, Corresponding Member of the USSR Academy of Sciences).

Unbeknownst to the prying eye, the project was controlled by Moscow. Stalin had known about the development of the atomic bomb in the west since 1936. In 1939 he commissioned the preparation of the Russian atomic project to Lavrenty Beria.

In 1940, the people's commissar L.P. Beria regularly receives secret documents from residents from America and Germany, stating that these countries are starting to create a "superweapon". Nobody knew or imagined what this weapon was. And now from scouts from England comes a message about a certain highly classified project "Uranus 235", to the development of which leading scientists, research organizations and large British firms are involved.

The British military command considers the issue of the practical use of Uranus 235 for military purposes to be fundamentally resolved. This information gave a general idea, without specific scientific and technical information and research results. It was urgent to find specialists directly working on the atomic problem. It was about the famous "Manhattan Project" launched by America.

Magnetic mines

With the outbreak of the Great Patriotic War, work in the laboratories of Phystech ceased. Physicists went to the front and to the militia. Academicians were evacuated to Kazan. Igor Vasilyevich, as a valuable scientist, was covered by a reservation that exempted him from mobilization, but he could not sit idle.

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“After the start of the war, he categorically refused to continue working in the field of 'pure science' and wanted to go to the front immediately. The most drastic measures had to be taken to convince Kurchatov to stay at the institute; then he categorically demanded such work, which could benefit the Red Army. He got this job and literally carried it out heroically in a combat situation. " (From the service characteristics of I. V. Kurchatov).

In August 1941 Igor Kurchatov with a group of specialists arrived in Sevastopol. They began to protect ships from magnetic mines, developing their own method. After the introduction of the demagnetization method on the Black Sea Fleet, and then on other fleets, not a single Soviet ship was damaged. For this work I.V. Kurchatov was awarded the medal "For the Defense of Sevastopol".

In the sky over Sevastopol, an air raid was howling, bombs fell, people died, and Igor Vasilyevich wrote to his wife in Leningrad: “It is sometimes amazing here. Yesterday, for example, I just could not take my eyes off the sea. The sun was setting, and bright, shiny spots shimmered on the green water, and in the distance red and yellow clouds were piling up.

Marina Dmitrievna, the wife of Igor Kurchatov, was his constant companion and muse, who devoted her whole life to caring for her husband.

Summons "Beard"

Kurchatov's name has been "beard" ever since he was recovering from typhus to hide his thinned face and let go of his beard. In the fall of 1942, Stalin decided to resume work on the nuclear problem. Igor Vasilyevich was summoned to Moscow and appointed scientific director of this most important project for the belligerent country. Kurchatov asks to be allowed to gather his former St. Petersburg employees from Phystech.

He “wins back” the people he needs to work very aggressively. He writes the characteristics himself, asks to release them from the front and release them from the camps. These were not only physicists, chemists and other scientific workers. The project required teams of specialists of various qualifications, who were scattered throughout the country by the war. It is the second year of the Second World War, and in the rear geologists are looking for uranium - without it, it is impossible to ensure the release on a mass scale of the substance that until then was obtained only in laboratories.

Igor Vasilievich ensures close interaction between all groups. Due to the properties of the urethral vector, Kurchatov unites a huge number of people, connects them with a common state idea. He becomes a scientific advisor nationwide. His urethral expansion was subject to a variety of departments and people's commissariats, geological parties, laboratories, factories, construction and transport organizations. Managing to keep in sight all areas of atomic science, he is simultaneously engaged in the cyclotron, and the reactor, and many other things.

Igor Vasilyevich Kurchatov rallied around himself and educated a whole galaxy of talented scientists. After the successful creation of the first Soviet nuclear project, the Kurchatov laboratories, scattered throughout the country, turned into institutes and closed institutions that still exist today. They are managed by the National Research Center "Kurchatov Institute", subordinate to the Government of Russia.

The uniqueness of the situation was that for the first time in the USSR, the fate of the most important project depended on the recommendations and decisions of scientists. Each of the industrial areas - the construction of giant reactors or uranium enrichment plants - were now headed by physicists from Kurchatov's team.

There are no publicly available memoirs and diaries of those who worked on the project of the first Soviet atomic bomb. These people were bound for life by the obligation of state military secrets.

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The new project became so secret that the NKVD established constant surveillance for all its participants, their relatives and relatives. They were afraid of the slightest information leak. Therefore, history has hardly preserved any photographs or footage of Kurchatov and his group. It was forbidden to take pictures of the scientists and scientific workers involved in the project. It was a kind of "Closed brotherhood of physicists", a state within a state, subject to its own laws, in which mystery dominated.

There is a blockade in Leningrad, and a highly secret laboratory opens in Moscow. It is impossible to make up for lost time in three years, but using American blueprints obtained by Soviet intelligence, it is possible to shorten the development time of your version. Here, as they say, "not to fat", not to personal ambitions. The bomb was needed yesterday. Soviet scientists lagged behind, so it was decided to create it on the American model.

Over time, the laboratory (LIP of the USSR Academy of Sciences) expanded and many of its departments gradually went beyond the Urals and to Siberia. The military direction in the laboratories remained a priority. The Soviet Union had to overcome the lag behind the United States in nuclear research.

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