AUTHORKruglov, Arkadii
TITLEThe History of the Soviet Atomic Industry
PUBLISHERTaylor and Francis
CITYLondon, England

This book provides a detailed history of the former Soviet Union’s development of nuclear weapons and power plants. Because the book was written after the Cold War, the author had access to information that had been secret for as much as fifty years. The book begins by giving background information about what had been discovered in nuclear physics in the years before World War II and what Russian scientists had contributed to that field. It then explores the Soviet nuclear weapons program during the war and compares it to the U.S. program. The bulk of the book focuses on the production of a plutonium atomic bomb from 1945 until it was successfully tested on August 29, 1949. The author also treats uranium production and the building of a heavy-water reactor. In the last chapter, the author discusses the history of radiation safety, exposure of workers to radiation and the problem of disposing of radioactive waste. The book is supported throughout with dozens of diagrams and charts, as well as photographs of facilities and of prominent atomic scientists of the Soviet Union. Originally written in Russian in 1994, it was translated by Andrei Lokhov and published in English in 2002.

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