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November 28, 2015
No of pages / words:
3 / 666
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To make the task even more difficult, the useful U-235 and nearly useless U-238 are isotopes, nearly identical in their chemical makeup. No ordinary chemical extraction method could separate them; only mechanical methods could work.
A massive enrichment laboratory/plant was constructed at Oak Ridge, Tennessee...
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Harold Urey and his colleagues at Columbia University devised an extraction system that worked on the principle of gaseous diffusion, and Ernest Lawrence (inventor of the Cyclotron) at the University of California in Berkeley implemented a process involving magnetic separation of the two isotopes.
Next, a gas centrifuge was used to further separate the lighter U-235 from the heavier, non-fissionable U-238...
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