DIRECTORCopp, Duncan
TITLEHitler’s Sunken Secret
RUNNING TIME56 minutes

This film documents a 2004 expedition to retrieve barrels of heavy water from the bowels of a sunken Norwegian ferry boat in an attempt to elucidate a piece of the history of the Nazi nuclear weapons program. The ferry boat Hydro, now located on the floor of Lake Tinnsjå in Norway (also called Lake Tinn), was sabotaged in 1944 by a team of Norsk militiamen in an Allied attempt to thwart the Nazis from safely transporting heavy water recently manufactured at the nearby Vemork hydroelectric plant. Including an interview with one of the Norwegian saboteurs as well as commentary from historians, scientists, and World War II veterans, the film provides a detailed explanation of the clandestine mission. It also offers interesting footage of the 2004 underwater expedition, wherein researchers found that the amount of heavy water on board was actually insufficient to produce a nuclear weapon. The film adds credence to the historical view that Nazi Germany lacked an equivalent to the United States' atomic bomb project. The DVD contains printable materials for educators, which can also be found along with other resources on a companion website at

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