By Christoph Laucht

Christoph Laucht deals the 1st research into the jobs performed by way of German-born emigre atomic scientists, Klaus Fuchs and Rudolf Peierls, within the improvement of British nuclear tradition, specially the perform of nuclear technological know-how and the political implications of the atomic scientists' paintings, from the beginning of the second one international warfare till 1959.

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Extra info for Elemental Germans: Klaus Fuchs, Rudolf Peierls and the Making of British Nuclear Culture 1939–59

Sample text

Fuchs stressed this point in a video interview conducted by the East German state security, Staatssicherheit, in the 1980s. The interviewer confronted him with a passage from Max Born’s autobiography. 22 In his memoirs, Fuchs’s former mentor at Edinburgh University described several discussions that he had with Fuchs after the latter had received an invitation to join Rudolf Peierls’s team in Birmingham to work on nuclear-weapons-related matters. 23 When he was confronted with this passage in the 1980s, Klaus Fuchs defended his participation in work on nuclear arms during the war.

The anonymous man portrayed Fuchs’s character as ‘very far from easy, but not a hermit in the sort of camp life’. 150 During the time of his internment in Canada, Fuchs, for example, offered moral support to Jewish fellow inmates whom he called retrospectively the ‘most displaced’ people after Hitler’s coming to power. Not only did he try to protect his fellow internees from being accidentally sent to a camp of Nazi POWs, but also from being exchanged for Canadian POWs held by the Third Reich, a fear that caused much anxiety among the inmates of the camp at the time.

36 Although the patent had been filed in 1934 with the British Patent Office, its transformation into a viable option did not take place until 1938 when nuclear fission was discovered. Otto Frisch and his aunt Lise Meitner played a decisive role in confirming the possibility of nuclear fission. Shortly before Christmas 1938, Otto Hahn sent his long-time collaborator Lise Meitner, who had by then emigrated to Sweden to 38 Elemental Germans escape Nazism, a letter with his own and his colleague Fritz Strassmann’s latest findings to ask for her interpretation.

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