Chronology of Milestone Events in Particle Physics

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FERMI 1943

Fermi, E.;
Experimental Production of a Divergent Chain Reaction
Internal report for the Metallurgical Laboratory of University of Chicago (1943);

Full text
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Russian: PDF TeX

Reprinted in
American Journal of Physics 20 (1952) 536.
Enrico Fermi. Collected Papers (Note e Memorie) v. I. Italy 1921 - 1938 (1962). The University of Chicago Press - Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, Roma.
(translation into Russian) Enrico Fermi. Nauchnye Trudy. I. 1921-1938 Italiya. (red. B.Pontecorvo), Nauka, Moskva, 1971.

Summary
This report gives a description of the construction and operation of a chain reacting pile. The pile was constructed in the West Stands Laboratory during the months of October and November 1942 and was operated for the first time on December 2, 1942.
It will appear from its description that an experiment of this kind requires the collaboration of a large number of physicists. The two groups of Zinn and Anderson took charge of the preparation of the materials and of the actual construction of the pile; the group of Wilson prepared the measuring equipment and the automatic controls. The details of this work are given by the members of the two groups in the appendices.\~ A large share of the credit for the experiment goes also to all the services of the Metallurgical Laboratory and in particular to the groups responsible for the development of the production and the testing of the materials. The exceptionally high purity requirements of graphite and uranium which were needed in very large amounts made the procurement of suitable materials the greatest single difficulty in all the development. (Extracted from the introductory part of the paper.).

Record comments
First Fermi nuclear reactor. Beginning of atomic energy era.


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