Did you know that Iowa State University had a hand in the creation of the Atomic Bomb that ended World War II? Join the Ames History Center Wednesday, September 9 at 7 p.m. for their discussion about Iowa State University’s top-secret role in the very important, Manhattan Project. This historic and controversial event could not have happened without the refined uranium that was supplied by Iowa State University and its talented students.
The desperate, top-secret race during World War II to master the military technology of nuclear fission before Nazi Germany played out in 32 sites across the U.S. and Canada. This intriguing story about how Ames and Iowa State University became one of these sites will be told by Ames Laboratory documentarian Steve Karsjen and Ames Historical Society co-president Kathy Svec whose father, Harry J. Svec, was pulled into the research program while a graduate student in Chemistry at Iowa State. The role that this small group of scientists played was extremely critical to the timing and success of the project, which was focused on creating 99% pure uranium that could be further separated into fissionable material. The Manhattan Project was so secret, even Iowa State University President Charles Friley was never told of any details!
The program on Wednesday will feature a discussion and a 30 minute video by Steve Karsjen that not only covers the uranium purification efforts on campus, but also includes the rise of Nazism and Japanese militarism in the 1930s, as well as the war itself.
After such a great turnout last year, the Ames Historical Society is bringing it back and you won’t want to miss it this time! This is a free event open to the public and will be held at the Ames Public Library. It will fill up fast, so be sure to arrive early. For more information, visit our website.