AIP History Center Newsletter
Volume XXXIV, No. 1 Spring 2002


New Source of Reference to Nuclear Issues Available on the Web

The Alsos Digital Library for Nuclear Issues ( provides for a diverse audience reliable annotations of references to the origins, applications, and consequences of nuclear energy. It is a valuable resource for students and teachers from middle school through college and for the general public. The Alsos library covers historical and current issues across many disciplines with careful annotation and extensive indexing.

The library currently consists of approximately 350 annotations of books, articles, videos, CD-ROMs, and Web sites. According to Dr. Frank Settle, co-director of the project, "The strength of the library is the integration of material from different disciplines with current and historical issues involving nuclear energy." The library provides references for a variety of disciplines ranging from physics to literature. The organization of the library and the user interface facilitate exploration by both general users and specialists. By the end of 2002, the library will contain over 1000 vetted, indexed annotations.

Two Washington and Lee University computer science professors, Frank Settle and Tom Whaley, direct the project, funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF). Elizabeth Blackmer serves as editor and oversees the preparation of annotations. A fifteen-member national review board with expertise in the requisite disciplines review all annotations. The Alsos Library is a component of a larger project, the NSF's National Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology Education Digital Library (NSDL), a $40 million program ( The goal of this program is to create, organize, and install high-quality educational resources on the Internet. The projects in this program will provide anytime, anywhere access to a rich array of authoritative and reliable interactive materials and learning environments. Science societies and others are designing projects to incorporate information on science as well as its history. For more information on the Alsos digital library, contact Frank Settle at 540-463-8616 or

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AIP History CenterCenter for History of Physics
Phone: 301-209-3165
American Institute of Physics 2003 American Institute of Physics, One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740-3843. Email: Phone: 301-209-3100; Fax: 301-209-0843