Uranium book

Development of Nuclear Technology by Johnna Kashmer

  • Named and Examined

    A Berlin pharmacist named Martin Klaproth examined the waste product from St. Joachimsthal and realized that whatever the "stuff" was, it was associated with lead. He named it uranium, after a newly found planet that had just been discovered called Uranus.
  • Claiming Territory

    King Leopold II of Belgium claimed the territory Shinkolobwe in a region called Katanga for himself when European powers were beginning to plant their flags in Africa. Eventually, Shinkolobwe yields Uranium for atomic bombs. If King Leopold hadn't claimed this territory the Uranium may have fallen into different hands and history would be completely different.
  • Radium

    Marie and Pierre received a nobel prize in physics because they proved that radium deserved its own spot on the periodic table. Pierre demonstrated radiums abilities to cure cancer. They were both ill with radiation poisoning. This is significant because it shows more research is being done on radioactive elements and scientific knowledge is gaining.
  • Radioactive Decay

    Frederick Soddy gave a speech to the Corps of Royal Engineers, he mused that a man who truly comprehended uranium would build a weapon that would destroy the earth. Soddy helped investigate the decay of thorium, uranium, and radium and concluded that they were casting off tiny fragments he named alpha particles. THIS IS A HUGE ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENTIFIC KNOWLEDGE!
  • Uranium Found

    Union Minere found patches of highgrade uranium in Shinkolobwe. Uranium is very radioactive and is used to make deadly bombs. If someone else had found the Uranium first they may have done something different with it, and history would be completely different.
  • Atoms

    Ernest Rutherford helped map the inner space of an atom but he didn't know what else was in the nucleus. He was invited to the Royal Society in London to give a lecture and served up the scientific equivalent of a dead fish: an unsupported hunch.
  • "Neutron"

    James Chadwick was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics for naming this zero-charged particle the "neutron." The "ghost" in the nucleus had finally been found.
  • Confirmation of Einstein's Postulate

    In the late 1930's a frenetic phase in physics as the study of uranium gripped laboratories on both sides of the Atlantic. Otto Frisch realized the uranium atom had not been transmuted, but it had actually split in his laboratory. This seemed to confirm Albert Einstein's postulate from 1905: that even a tiny amount of matter could be converted into mammoth amounts of energy, tempered by the unchanging speed of light.
  • Germany gains control of St. Joachimsthal

    "Hitler had unknowingly absorbed a jewel: the old mining town of St. Joachimsthal, one of the worlds only known supplies of uranium." If the nazis had also gained control of Shinkolobwe, the United States and Britain would have had none of the raw material necessary to construct an atomic weapon.
  • Einstein's Letter

    Albert Einstein sent the president, Franklin D. Roosevelt a letter. The purpose of the letter was to inform him about the things nuclear power can help us with. The Uranium Committee was created in an effort to examine the potential for building a weapon. However, "the letter did not work its magic." The committee was poorly funded and there's no proof that the president even read the letter in full.
  • Obtaining Uranium

    Shinkolobwe yielded most of the uranium for the atomic bombs the United States had dropped on Hiroshima and Nagaski. If the U.S. hadn't gottent the uranium from Shinkolobwe the atomic bombs would never have been built or dropped, destroying land and lives.
  • New Location

    When the nazis invaded Belgium, Union Miniere moved its head quarters to New York. New York is one of the largest cities in the world. By re-locating this put a target on New York and the United States.
  • Rush to Build an Atomic Bomb

    JAPAN- The physicist Tokutaro Hagiwara lectured on the possible development of a hydrogen-bomb using super explosive U-235. Officers were sent to mines on the Korean Peninsula to look for uranium.
    GERMANY- Werner Heisenberg envisioned using deuterium oxide as a moderator to slow down the neutrons and create a more effective nuclear release.
  • Rush to Build an Atomic Bomb (continued)

    FRANCE- A team of researchers led by Frederick Joliot-Curie made a deal to secure 55 tons of uranium from Africa and discussed the possibility of testing an atomic weapon in the emptiness of the Sahara.
    RUSSIA- Igor Kurchatov feared that Germany and the United States would soon be collecting uranium, either for power or weaponry. He later formed a committee to study ways to separate U-235.
  • Manhattan Project

    Army Colonel Kenneth D. Nichols paid a visit to Union Miniere. He had just been hired to help administer the Manhattan Project (top secret effort to build the atomic bomb). He was there to buy the waste uranium from Shinkolobwe.
  • Achievement of Nuclear Fission

    In a laboratory in Leipzig, Robert Dopel and Werner Heisenberg managed to construct a crude spherical fission device out of uranium and heavy water. It started to leak and when they opened the outer shell for inspection, the uranium reacted with the air, caught on fire, and then burst in a harmless nonnuclear fizzle, spraying the whole lab with a mess of burning uranium that sent the building ablaze. This was one of the only known uses of St. Joachimsthal uranium during World War II.
  • World's First Nuclear Reactor

    Enrico Fermi had built and tested the world's first nuclear reactor on an old squash court underneath Stagg Field at the University of Chicago. Instead of just concentrating on building an atomic bomb, steps towards using nuclear power as energy are finally taken.
  • Producing a Usable Atomic Bomb by the End of the War

    Japan's surrender was becoming increasingly certain, and it remained doubtful that the United States would be able to produce a usable atomic bomb by the end of the war.
  • Independence from Belgium

    The Belgians had expected to rule their colony in Africa for more than a century, but increasing violence int the capital convinced them to step aside and grant the congo its independence. Shinkolobwe is no longer in Belgian control. This means that no longer is the uranium just theres either.
  • Stolen Uranium Rods

    Two uranium rods were stolen from a facility in Britain without anyone realizing they had disappeared. The rods are still radioactive and it is unknown as to where they are or who has them still. It is also unknown what is being done with them or what they are being planned to use for. The disappearing of these two rods should make reasons for better security higher.
  • Shinkolobwe

    Shinklobwe is now considered an official non-place. The provincial governor had ordered a squad of soldiers to evacuate the village next to the pit and burn down all the huts. Nothing was left behind except for the stumps and garbage.