AUTHORBroad, William J.
TITLESlender and Elegant, It Fuels the Bomb
PERIODICAL TITLENew York Times
DATE PUBLISHED2004
VOLUME NUMBER
ISSUE NUMBER23 March
PAGE NUMBERSD1
ISSN 0362-4331
Web Access
Available online from New York Times   (available with fee)


This brief article provides a short history and a description of the gas centrifuge technology used to separate fissionable isotope uranium-235 from the more abundant isotope uranium-238. That technology was invented by Gernot Zippe, a German physicist imprisoned by the Russians in 1945. It was during imprisonment that he developed the method of isotope separation which had been abandoned by the U.S. Manhattan Project. That technique is currently used by many nations to prepare fuel for nuclear power reactors and also has the potential to enrich uranium necessary for nuclear weapons. It is the technology that Abdul Qadeer Khan brought to Pakistan's nuclear program and later sold to other nations. The article contains instructive diagrams.


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