Tuesday, July 26, 2011

National Security & Science: Hitler's Scientists & Operation Paperclip 3b

We continue in our discussion of Nazi Germany's technological advancements.

In our previous article we discussed some very interesting circumstantial evidence concerning Nazi Germany's nuclear technology, specifically as to whether they had detonated an atomic weapon during World War II before the explosion at Hiroshima.  We had discussed a supposed detonation in an island on the Baltic Sea in 1944.  This however, was not the only reported nuclear detonation.

Nazi Detonations Against Soviet Troops at the Russian Front
This detonation is not the only ones reported.  The Soviet government became aware of some new weapon that was being used by the Germans on the Russian front.  In a report declassified in 1978 is an intercept from the Japanese embassy in Stockholm to Tokyo titled, Reports on the Atom-Slitting Bomb.
It is a fact that in June of 1943 the German Army tried out an utterly new type of weapon against the Russians at a location 150 kilometers southeast of Kursk. Although it was the entire 19th Infantry Regiment of the Russians which was thus attacked, only a few bombs (each round up to 5 kilograms) sufficed to utterly wipe them out to the last man.
The report continues to mention an eyewitness account from a Hungarian Lieutenant-Colonel allied with the German army who states (some parts are hard to read):
All the men and the horses (?within the area off?) the explosion of the shells were charred black and even their ammunition had all been detonated. " Moreover, it is a fact that the same type of war material was tried out in the Crimea, too. At that time the Russians claimed that this was poison-gas, and protested that if Germany were ever again to use it, Russia, too, would use poison-gas.
The traditional history denies, however, that the uranium on board the U-234 was enriched and therefore easily usable in an atomic bomb. The accepted theory asserts there is no evidence that the uranium stocks of U-234 were transferred into the Manhattan Project...And the traditional history asserts that the bomb components on board (U-234 arrived too late to be included in the atomic bombs that were dropped on Japan. The documentation indicates quite differently on all accounts.
Carter Hydrick
Critical Mass: The Real Story of the Atomic Bomb and the Birth of the Nuclear Age
via Joseph Farrell Reich of the Black Sun
This Japanese message was intercepted December 12, 1944 by the Americans.  There are two separate battles mentioned, the battle for the Crimea which was centered on taking the city of Sevastapool and the of Kursk both taking place in 1943.  There were several kinds of bombs the Germans were developing which used nuclear physics to understand.  Among them were fuel-air bombs, liquid-air bombs, and what would have been a third generation atomic bomb beyond "little boy," beyond "fat man," to what we today call the hydrogen bomb but to the Germans it was referred to as a "molecular bomb."  We cite an excellent article on this subject at magnetenergy.  It is interesting to note that the United States never tested the bomb type used in Hiroshima.  According to General Groves, "...we believed that a gun-type bomb would be entirely satisfactory...and did not feel that any full scale test would be necessary."  Joseph Farrell and others believe this bomb was not tested because the Americans already knew it would work after the Germans had detonated one.  This is of course in and of itself speculation but it nevertheless is interesting when placed together with all the other information so far.

For those who are not sure about the difference between the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs, and might need a refresher course, we provide some videos.  These are from a film entitled, Trinity and Beyond.  If you cannot see the embedded videos, here is the link: http://bit.ly/rha8Eq for the first of 8 parts which you can follow from there.

Nazi Uranium For Manhattan Project
June 29, 1945 Washington Post Article
via: Joseph Farrell
U234 surrendering May 14, 1945
In December 28, 1944 Eric Jette, chief metallurgist at Los Alamos sent a report stated that at the present rate of production 15 kilos of Uranium 235, later it would be understood that at least 50 kilos of U235 would be needed to make one Nagasaki "fat boy" plutonium atomic bomb.  This Uranium 235 had been siphoned off towards the plutonium bomb and had left even less for the feasible "little boy" uranium bomb used in Hiroshima.  To make matters worse, a report from Oppenheimer as late as May 1945 stated that they would not be able to make any atomic bomb until at the earliest November of 1945.  To add to all the tension, a Washington Post article dated June 29, 1945 stated that the allies had discovered the "largest Luftwaffe airfield" seen by the senior officer which had "forty giant bombers with a 7,000 mile range."  An equally big problem for the Allies was a fuse needed for the "fat man" plutonium bomb that was dropped on Nagasaki.  As Farrell states,
...fairly late in the war...it was discovered that in order to make a bomb from plutonium, the critical mass wold have to be assembled much faster than any existing Allied fuse technologies could accomplish. Moreover, there was so little margin of error, since the fuses in an implosion device would have to fire close to simultaneously as possible, that Allied engineers began to despair of making a plutonium bomb work.
Yet, less than two weeks later, the people in Los Alamos had doubled their U235 amounts. How did this happen?  What changed?

The theory put forth by some is that the Allies got this additional U235 from a German U-Boat that surrendered to the Americans in May of 1945 gave the Allies enough U235 to produce at least the first atomic bomb.  According to Ferrell, who quotes Carter Hydrick's book titled, Critical Mass: How Nazi Germany Surrendered Enriched Uranium for The United States' Atomic Bomb, explains,
Difficult as it seems to accept, the fact of the matter is that Nazi Germany had "at least five, and possibly as many as seven, serious isotope separation development programs underway." One of these, an "isotope sluice" developed by Drs. Bagge and Korsching, two of the scientists interred at Farm Hall, was brought to such a state of efficiency by mid-1944 that a single pass of uranium through it would enrich it to four times that produced by a single pass through the gaseous diffusion gates at Oak Ridge!
Heins Schlicke
This explains why the Germans were out producing the Allies in enriched Uranium 235.  In this U-Boat that was captured, the U235 had been stored in the torpedo tubes which had been lined with gold to prevent them from being contaminated with other elements.  This is further indication that this U235 was very close to weapons grade.  There is reason to think that the Americans knew of the whereabouts of this U-Boat and deliberately jammed the British and Canadian radio communications so they would be the only ones able to communicate with the submarine and guide it to U.S. territory.  This obviously was no ordinary U-Boat.  In the passenger list of the submarine was the German inventor (Dr. Heinz Schlicke) of the infrared proximity fuse, which was much further advanced than the American fuses.  Along with him, were four of these fuses.  To underscore the importance of this German scientist to the Manhattan Project, as Hydrick points out via Joseph Farrell's book,
...there is a communication from May 25, 1945 from the chief of Naval Operations, to Portsmouth where the U-234 was brought after its surrender, indicating that Dr. Schlicke, now a prisoner of war, would be accompanied by three naval officers, to secure the fuses and bring them to Washington.14 There Dr. Schlicke was apparently to give a lecture on the fuses under the auspices of a "Mr. Alvarez,"" who would appear to be none other than well-known Manhattan Project scientist Dr. Luis Alvarez, the very man who, according to the Allied Legend, "solved" the fusing problem for the plutonium bomb!
With this information, we are also led to ask the same question Dr. Ferrell asks,
So it would appear that the surrender of the U-234 to the Americans in 1945 solved the Manhattan Project's two biggest outstanding problems: lack of sufficient supplies of weapons grade uranium, and lack of adequate fusing technology to make a plutonium bomb work. And this means that in the final analysis the Allied Legend about the Germans having been "far behind" the Allies in the race for the atom bomb is simply a incorrect in the extreme in the best case, or a deliberate lie in the worst.  But the fuses raise another frightening specter:  What were the Germans developing such sophisticated fuses for?  Infrared heat-seeking rockets, which they had developed, would be one answer, and of course an implosion device to compress critical mass would be another.
We will discuss this question in our next installment in this series. 

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