Where were you on July 16, 1945? If you were in Alamogordo, New Mexico, you wouldn’t remember because you’d be dust. Because at 5:29:45 a.m. the first atom bomb was test there.
In case you don’t remember, in 1939 Enrico Fermi (an Italian physicist who had immigrated to the US) met with some folks from the Navy to talk about fission. Once everyone decided they were talking about WMDs rather than bass hunting, they got down to business and Manhattan became a Project.
The original budget for the Manhattan Project was a whopping $6,000 which was a lot more then than it is now, but when you’re talking about major bomb building wasn’t a whole lot. But what with the war (II) and concerns that Germany might be building their own uranium bomb, the War Department got involved and budgets went out the window. Or possibly into the bomb since they’d proven highly combustible
Brigadier-General Leslie R. Groves won control of the Project in a poker game (yeah, I completely made that up) and set about attracting the best scientific minds of the day. As if he could have kept them away.
The Manhattan Project began its national tour, leaving New York (possibly because the Muppets took Manhattan), scooting through Chicago, and ending up in the New Mexico desert where it was not renamed. Along the way, there were lots of tests and potty breaks. It’s amazing more people didn’t get hurt and more undies didn’t get soiled.
Then The Test. Allow me to summarize the science for you: boom.
Boom as in the equivalent of 20,000 tons of TNT. And while I’ve never seen an atomic explosion or 20,000 tons of TNT, I have it on great authority that the boom is BIG.
Hope you have a banging good day.