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The Atomic Bomb. Physics 001. Cultural Project #1. By: Justin Hatch, Mary Crossley, Lauren Eppinger, Seline Narin and Janet Cahilly . Before the Discovery. There was no type of destructive force as intense or deadly prior to the atomic bomb’s introduction in 1945.

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physics 001

The Atomic


Physics 001

Cultural Project


By: Justin Hatch, Mary Crossley, Lauren Eppinger, Seline Narin and Janet Cahilly


Before the Discovery

  • There was no type of destructive force as intense or deadly prior to the atomic bomb’s introduction in 1945.
  • Wars were being fought on a global scale with increasing frequency prior to the advent of the atomic bomb.
  • WWI was fought with massive loss of human life between the years of 1914-1918.
  • WWII was fought just over 20 years later between the years of 1939-1945.

Research began in 1939

  • The United States, Canada, and The United Kingdom feared that Nazi Germany would develop it first.
  • J. Robert Oppenheimer of the United States directed and General Leslie Groves oversaw the production of what at that time was believed to be the most destructive weapon in human history.




The Manhattan Project

  • The primary goal was to beat the Nazi’s in the race to the realization of a nuclear weapon.
  • Functioning between 1939-1947 it employed 130,000 people and consumed 2 billion dollars.
  • Oppenheimer (and crew) figured out how to create Uranium-235 and how to release its nuclear energy in chain reactions.
  • They fired a neutron with precision at Uramium-235 resulting in an awesome release of energy.

1945 World War II

  • Japan ignored the United States’ call for surrender after the fire-bombings of 67 of their cities.
  • Harry S. Truman made the command decision to utilize the atomic bomb in an attempt to force the Japanese into unconditional surrender.

The Atomic Bomb

  • An American B-29 Bomber dropped “little boy” over the Japanese city of Hiroshima with the estimated force of 13 Kilotons of TNT.
  • Three days later and American B-52 Bomber dropped a second nuclear bomb over the city of Nagasaki.

“Little Boy”

Weight: 9,700 pounds

Length: 120 inches

Diameter: 28 inches

Blast Yield: 54-75 TJ

“Little Boy” immediately cleared 5 square miles of the city and killed (30%) or 80,000 people.


“Fat Man”

Weight: 10,213 pounds

Length: 10.7 Feet

Diameter: 5 Feet

Blast Yield: 75 sticks of dynamite

“Fat man” immediately annihilated almost half the

city killing 35,000 people including non-combatant

men, women, and children.


The aftermath

  • In 1945 the United States dropped “Little Boy” and “Fat Man” on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
  • This was destruction unprecedented in human history and world would never be the same. It immediately changed the outlook on war.

Nagasaki Temple


End of War

  • The project’s work made possible the defeat of Japan as the last holdout of the Axis powers during WWII.
  • Had Harry S. Truman decided not to use the Atomic Bomb, thousands or hundreds of thousands of American and Japanese lives could have been lost.
  • America’s use of an Atomic weapon in a wartime situation remains unprecedented and controversial to this day.
  • Developing and successfully employing the atomic bomb laid the groundwork for other fission bombs and fusion bombs.

Nuclear Armament

  • During the Cold War, between the years 1946 and 1991, both Allied Powers and Communist Nations engaged in “Arms Races” building and stockpiling masses of nuclear weapons.
  • 30,000 nuclear weapons were operational at the height of the cold war.
  • 6,000 nuclear weapons remain in operation today.

Concern for the future

  • Not only can an atomic bomb kill millions of people instantaneously, should a nuclear war break out, it would change the climate of the Earth for decades to follow.
  • All the debris from the explosions would block out the sun’s rays; plunging us into a nuclear winter.
  • Because of its power, it has stopped nations from needlessly engaging in global war.

Works Cited

  • Photos from: & www.wikipedia