Lesson 1, Topic 1
In Progress

Brief History of Nuclear Energy

Abdulaziz July 19, 2020
  • Uranium discovered and named in 1789 (Klaproth)
  • Radiation was discovered in 1895 (Becquerel, Marie and Pierre Curie)
  • Early 20th Century saw dramatic improvements in understand what atoms
    were and how they worked (Rutherford, Bohr, Soddy, Chadwick,
physicist, energy, einstein
  • Nuclear fission, chain reactions and critical mass discovered in 1939
    (mostly British
  • Enrichment process developed in 1940/41
  • Once Pearl Harbour was attacked, the USA entered the war and ramped up efforts to develop a N-bomb
  • Manhattan Project saw $1B invested to enrich U235 and design and
    build nuclear bombs (Oppenheimer)
  • After the war, attention turned to generation of electricity.
    • First demonstration scale plants: late 1950s
    • Commercialization: 1960 (Westinghouse)
nuclear power plant, cooling tower, power plant
Nuclear Power Plant