Год издания: 2012Количество страниц: 294
This memoir outlines the life of a scientist spanning much of the twentieth century. It began at a time before radios were found in most American homes, and before the advent of "talking pictures". His interest in science was born at an early age, sparked by his mother, as she introduced him to the stars in a dark Utah sky. Early experiences and training were much the same as for any other boy at the time. But with the beginning of war in Europe, and the U.S. response by instituting universal conscription (the draft), he realized the importance of education in fulfilling his military obligation, and enlisted in a Navy training program. Navy service took him to Chicago and Southern California, and eventually to little-known Peleliu Island in the Western Pacific, a foretaste of a life of frequent travel to follow. World War II was followed all too soon by the retreat of the Soviet Union behind an "Iron Curtain" of secrecy, a massive buildup of conventional forces and armed occupation of neighboring countries. It became essential to know when they succeeded in building the atomic bomb. This book is a first-hand account in non-technical terms of some of the ways in which this was accomplished. This was followed by attempts to ban the bomb, or at least to ban nuclear testing. The author was fortunate to be near the center of U.S. efforts in many of these attempts, and the book describes important activities and events that ultimately led to achieving the lesser of these goals.