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Courses - Fall 2020
Physics Department Site
The Manhattan Project
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
Additional information: This course has no prerequisites. However, the course will use mathematics extensively at the level up to and including standard high school algebra II. Students will need to be comfortable applying mathematics at this level.
Introduction to some critical ideas of nuclear physics and a review of some key historical developments starting at the end of the 19th century. Chronological development of nuclear physics from the discovery of radioactivity by Becquerel in 1896 through to the discovery of fission in Germany in 1938 followed by an examination of the programs to develop nuclear weapons in the United States, Britain and Germany. Extensive study of political, ethical, scientific, military, social, and economic issues surrounding the Manhattan Project.
This course explores the development of the atomic bomb during the Manhattan project. Nuclear Physics is introduced in a historical context from the discovery of radioactivity in 1896 to the discovery of nuclear fission in Germany in 1938; this historical approach allows students to understand how scientific knowledge is built up over time.