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The Atomic Bomb On August 2 1939 some scientists wrote to President Roosevelt of efforts in Nazi Germany to purify Uranium-235 with which might in turn be used to build an atomic bomb It was shortly thereafter that the United States government began the serious undertaking known only then as the Manhattan Project The Manhattan Project was designed to research and production that would produce a usable atomic bomb The Project was named after the Manhattan Engineer District of the US Army Corps of Engineers because a lot of the early research was done in New York In 1942 General Leslie Grove was chosen to lead the project He brought a site at Oak Ridge Tennessee For facilities to separate the necessary uranium-235 from the much more common uranium-238 Robert Oppenheimer was appointed to lead the day to day running of the project The team of scientists who worked on the atom bomb worked six days a week and often eighteen hours a day By 1945 the project has nearly forty laboratories and factories which employed 200000 people That was more than the total amount of people employed in the US automobile industry in 1945 The total cost of the Manhattan Project was 2 billion which is about the equivalent of 26 billion today Finally on July 16 1945 a practical atomic bomb was completed The first test code named Trinity was exploded at Alamogordo New Mexico The Trinity test confirmed the implosion design used for the Fat Man bomb exploded over Nagasaki Long before the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor the United States in late 1941 established a secret program which cam to be known as the Manhattan Project to develop an atomic bomb a powerful explosive nuclear weapon The aim of the project was to build an atom bomb before Germany did After Roosevelts death in April 1945 Harry S Truman became president and inherited the bomb-development program At this point the new
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