Science: The Bomb That Didn't Go Off

How close were the Nazis getting to making an atom bomb? This frightening question spurred U.S. bombmakers throughout the war. It also helped still their consciences.

The Germans never came very close to making a bomb, apparently. In a recent issue of Britain's Nature magazine, German Nobel-Physicist Werner Heisenberg tells how they almost achieved a successful uranium pile; but they did not even try to make a bomb.

Heisenberg points out that all the world's physicists knew, before the war, that atoms of uranium 235 (the rare isotope of uranium) would split in two...

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