National security

Interviewed by
Bruce Wheaton
Interview date
Location
Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory
Abstract

Family background, early education, and science-technology interests in California and Oregon; Willamette College and radio electronics; contacts with E.O. Lawrence; career as graduate student at University of California, Berkeley, 1942-1949; war work at Berkeley Radiation Laboratory and Los Alamos; security; attitudes toward Trinity test and Hiroshima; postwar political involvement; big machines and general comments on postwar physics.

Interviewed by
Spencer Weart
Interview date
Location
Conducted on the telephone
Abstract

Brief interview focused on secrecy in the 1940s. As member of the National Academy of Sciences, Division of Physical Sciences, Breit expressed the necessity of keeping track of the fission problem through a publications committee headed by Frank B. Jewett. Comments on Manhattan Project scientists (Leo Szilard, Hans A. Bethe).