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Oral History Interview — Dr. Paul Harteck


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Interview with Dr. Paul Harteck
By Mark Walker
In Santa Barbara, California
August 22, 1984

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Paul Harteck; August 22, 1984

ABSTRACT: Assistant to Fritz Haber in Universität Berlin; study with Ernest Rutherford in England. Physical chemistry as boundary area between nuclear physics and nuclear chemistry. Harteck's working style, taking up new topics as a type of training. World War II as a stimulus for nuclear energy; the organization of the German uranium project; experiment with carbon dioxide; heavy water in Norway and in Germany; the effect of war on relations between scientists; plutonium; Werner Heisenberg and his circle; Gustav Hertz. Denunciation of Harteck to the Gestapo by a colleague; the German nuclear reactor experiments during the war; isotope separation. Harteck's decision to emigrate to America; Russia, East Germany, and reasons for leaving Germany. Atomic bombs; Farm Hall and the German scientists in Allied custody at the end of the war. Also prominently mentioned are: Brun, Bütefisch, Kurt Diebner, Abraham Esau, Walther Groth, Gustav Ludwig Hertz, and von Hedwig.