AHF Launches ‘Manhattan Project Innovations’ Tour

The Atomic Heritage Foundation staff, founded in 2002 by Cynthia Kelly, right, is a nonprofit organization in Washington, D.C. Courtesy/AHF


AHF News:

The Atomic Heritage Foundation (AHF) has unveiled a new Ranger in Your Pocket program on Manhattan Project Innovations with more than two dozen vignettes addressing the extraordinary scientific and engineering innovations that came out of the Manhattan Project and their legacy for today.


You can now listen to first-hand accounts of scientists and engineers who worked on the Project and developed revolutionary innovations to solve complex, first-of-a-kind problems. The tour, which features several different stops such as Thinkers & Tinkerers, Overcoming the Odds, and Health and Safety Monitoring, highlights the ingenuity and resourcefulness of Manhattan Project scientists well beyond the creation of an atomic bomb.


In one vignette, nuclear physicist Philip Abelson explains his unique liquid thermal diffusion process for separating uranium isotopes. In The Colloquium, Manhattan Project veteran Ben Diven remembers how Laboratory Director J. Robert Oppenheimer inspired innovation through weekly colloquia in Los Alamos: “The colloquia were one of the most important things…Oppenheimer insisted that everything could be discussed there. Very frequently then it would turn out that somebody who had not associated with them at all would come up with an idea of something that would actually be important.”




The Atomic Heritage Foundation plans to develop additional Manhattan Project tours on the “Ranger in Your Pocket” site. One tour will focus on Bathtub Row, Fuller Lodge and the former Technical Area in downtown Los Alamos. Another will focus on espionage and the role that spies played during the Manhattan Project.

For the Innovations program, AHF is very grateful for the support of the Crystal Trust, M. J. Murdock Charitable Trust, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and Manhattan Project veteran James Schoke. 

The Atomic Heritage Foundation (AHF), founded by Cynthia Kelly in 2002, is a nonprofit organization in Washington, DC, dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of the Manhattan Project and the Atomic Age and its legacy. The Foundation’s goal is to provide the public not only a better understanding of the past but also a basis for addressing scientific, technical, political, social and ethical issues of the 21st century. AHF works with Congress, the Department of Energy, National Park Service, state and local governments, nonprofit organizations and the former Manhattan Project communities to preserve and interpret historic sites and develop useful and accessible educational materials for veterans, teachers, and the general public.