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The Physics of the Manhattan Project

Authors: Reed, Bruce Cameron

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  • Only treatment of the physics of Manhattan Project-era fission bombs prepared by a recognized expert on the topic 
  • Surveys all aspects of the physics of fission weapons, from the characteristics of fission to analyzing critical mass, bomb yield, how to trigger the nuclear explosion in the first place, and complicating factors such as the probability that a bomb will “pre-detonate” 
  • Technical points illustrated with numerous graphs 
  • Includes student exercises, with answers
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eBook $59.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-030-61373-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $79.99
price for USA in USD
About this Textbook

The development of nuclear weapons during the Manhattan Project is one of the most significant scientific events of the twentieth century. This revised and updated 4th edition explores the challenges that faced the scientists and engineers of the Manhattan Project. It gives a clear introduction to fission weapons at the level of an upper-year undergraduate physics student by examining the details of nuclear reactions, their energy release, analytic and numerical models of the fission process, how critical masses can be estimated, how fissile materials are produced, and what factors complicate bomb design. An extensive list of references and a number of exercises for self-study are included. 

Revisions to this fourth edition include many upgrades and new sections. Improvements are made to, among other things, the analysis of the physics of the fission barrier, the time-dependent simulation of the explosion of a nuclear weapon, and the discussion of tamped bomb cores. New sections cover, for example, composite bomb cores, approximate methods for various of the calculations presented, and the physics of the polonium-beryllium "neutron initiators" used to trigger the bombs.

The author delivers in this book an unparalleled, clear and comprehensive treatment of the physics behind the Manhattan project.

About the authors

Bruce Cameron Reed is the Charles A. Dana Professor of Physics at Alma College (Michigan), emeritus. He has published five textbooks and over 50 journal papers and semi-popular articles on the Manhattan Project; three of the texts are with Springer (one of these is currently in press, a popular treatment of the Project). In 2009, he was elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society in recognition of his contributions to promoting understanding of the history and physics of the Manhattan Project.

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $59.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-030-61373-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $79.99
price for USA in USD
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Physics of the Manhattan Project
Authors
Copyright
2021
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-61373-0
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-61373-0
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-61372-3
Edition Number
4
Number of Pages
XXIII, 256
Number of Illustrations
88 b/w illustrations
Topics