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Interview with Robert Rex Brownlee, August 6, 2007


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Narrator affiliation: Astrophysicist, Alt, Test Division Leader, Los Alamos National Laboratory

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Brownlee, Robert Rex. Interview, 2007 August 06. MS-00818. [Transcript]. Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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Nevada Test Site Oral History Project University of Nevada, Las Vegas Interview with Robert Brownlee August 6, 2007 Las Vegas, Nevada Interview Conducted By Mary Palevsky © 2007 by UNLV Libraries Oral history is a method of collecting historical information through recorded interviews conducted by an interviewer/ researcher with an interviewee/ narrator who possesses firsthand knowledge of historically significant events. The goal is to create an archive which adds relevant material to the existing historical record. Oral history recordings and transcripts are primary source material and do not represent the final, verified, or complete narrative of the events under discussion. Rather, oral history is a spoken remembrance or dialogue, reflecting the interviewee’s memories, points of view and personal opinions about events in response to the interviewer’s specific questions. Oral history interviews document each interviewee’s personal engagement with the history in question. They are unique records, reflecting the particular meaning the interviewee draws from her/ his individual life experience. Produced by: The Nevada Test Site Oral History Project Departments of History and Sociology University of Nevada, Las Vegas, 89154- 5020 Director and Editor Mary Palevsky Principal Investigators Robert Futrell, Dept. of Sociology Andrew Kirk, Dept. of History The material in the Nevada Test Site Oral History Project archive is based upon work supported by the U. S. Dept. of Energy under award number DEFG52- 03NV99203 and the U. S. Dept. of Education under award number P116Z040093. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in these recordings and transcripts are those of project participants— oral history interviewees and/ or oral history interviewers— and do not necessarily reflect the views of the U. S. Department of Energy or the U. S. Department of Education. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 1 Interview with Robert Brownlee August 6, 2007 Conducted by Mary Palevsky Table of Contents Introduction: Early history of the development of the atomic bomb during and after World War II 1 Discusses “ bungles” occurring during testing in the Pacific including Operation Crossroads ( 1946) 2 Los Alamos and Livermore laboratories and creation of the AEC testing program 4 Alvin Graves: reasons for moving to underground testing, philosophy re: sacrificing people for objectives 5 Los Alamos, World War II, and decision to drop the atomic bomb 8 Military service as B- 29 navigator ( World War II) 9 Early underground testing: being able to observe tests; work on Lacrosse ( NTS, 1956) 10 Early work with containment: limited test ban treaty and “ not one atom out” 12 Test Evaluation Panel ( TEP)/ Containment Evaluation Panel ( CEP), the labs, and decision- making on tests 15 Definition of “ not one atom out” 20 Containment and design as two separate scientific tracks 21 Discussion of Edward Teller as a theoretician 22 Role of Mother Nature vs. people in theorizing 24 Unanticipated problems with containment: unexpected yield ( high or low) 25 Unanticipated problems with containment: stress fields ( study of South African gold mines) 27 Unanticipated problems with containment: geology ( Pike, 1964) 29 Unanticipated problems with containment: collapses and cable leakage ( gas- blocking cables and stemming) ( Finfoot, 1966) 31 Unanticipated problems with containment: water and hydrofrac ( Baneberry, 1970) 35 Unanticipated problems with containment: leakage, collapse, and stop leakage. Hearings on Baneberry: investigation and consequences 36 Review of the critical elements of containment 44 Service on JHEG, and observation of “ miracles” ( probability) 45 Loss of understanding of technical, scientific, and engineering knowledge in containment, and helping modern students to understand the past and what they see in the present 48 Understanding nuclear history, the roles of those who participated in that history 52 What nuclear energy allows us to envision, justification of sacrifice, and human destiny tied to nuclear energy 54 World War II and justification for use of atomic bomb, Russia and the U. S. during the Cold War, role of nuclear power as a deterrent 57 Conclusion: Alternatives to nuclear power to settle world crises, consequences of population density in the world, and vision of destiny of man 59 UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 1 Interview with Robert Brownlee August 6, 2007 in Las Vegas, Nevada Conducted by Mary Palevsky [ 00: 00: 00] Begin Track 2, Disc 1. Robert Brownlee: The first lecture I give at these courses [ for UNWTOP, Underground Nuclear Weapons Testing Orientation Program] is just pure history, and my theme is, how do we happen to have nuclear weapons? And so then I start with the desire, with our fright that the Germans might get in [ with an atomic bomb during World War II]; I describe the guys at Los Alamos [ National Laboratory] in those early years, who tended to be Europeans, in interest if not nationality, and their fear of Hitler, and their desire to make sure that he was defeated, and so they were working night and day to do that. And then suddenly, Germany was defeated. So, in Los Alamos there was among those scientists, an appreciation for what nuclear explosions might actually be, and so some of them, once Germany was defeated, were not very enthusiastic about continuing. But, I’m going to say the military— but I’m really talking about the administration in Washington [ D. C.]— they saw the necessity to stop the war essentially at any cost, because those— and I was in the Pacific, so I was aware of the fact that we were facing a really gosh- awful future with Japan. And as time has gone by, I appreciate even more how close that was. The Germans had given Japan all the necessary information for jet airplanes, and Japan had the capacity to really do things quickly, and it was a close call. So I say, OK, we fired three nuclear explosions, when we only had enough material for four, but why did we do that? It was to stop the war. And so we fired those three things, and the war stopped, and so that’s that. And then I bring in the fact that it’s much more complicated because there was a war between the Army and the Navy, a tremendous thing. First of all, it was just historical; the Army and the Navy made sure they didn’t get along. The Pacific was a Navy lake, and they felt that the UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 2 money spent on the Manhattan Project was a complete waste, because it should be given to them; they controlled the Joint Chiefs of Staff [ JCS], [ Franklin Delano] Roosevelt was a Navy man, and so they were dead set against the Manhattan Project. This is particularly true of one admiral, and I’ll say his name in a moment [ Admiral King]. He’d been in ordnance all his life, and he was on record as saying that it was ridiculous to think that they could get that much energy from something, and so he regarded the Manhattan Project as a complete waste. And I was in the Twentieth Air Force, and we were aware that we were surrounded by Navy, and they controlled everything, except the mail. Air mail. At any rate, they were scornful. And, lo and behold, the Army Air Corps dropped two bombs, and the war ended. And the Navy was astonished. And so they felt— they were after all in control— they felt obligated to find out about this new weapon; they were convinced that it couldn’t really bother them, but they wanted to find out. So the [ Operation] [ 00: 05: 00] Crossroads test in ’ 46 was strictly a Navy deal, and it was bungled in about every way you could bungle it. Mary Palevsky: Can you give me some sense of some of the bigger bungles? They put the fleet of about 198 ships, I think, in Bikini, and the first thing was an air drop. The only plane that could drop an atom bomb was a B- 29, so that was the Army Air Corps. B- 29s at high altitude never, ever hit the target that they aimed. The reason for that was we didn’t know that the atmosphere was layered and every tacking of wind was going this way, so when you dropped a bomb, it did that [ demonstrating], and as a result, the commander of the Twentieth Air Force said, We’ll go in with two incendiary planes and drop a great big X. And then everybody bombs on the X, and no matter where the bombs go, it turns out you create a fire UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 3 storm, and that’s much better. You couldn’t hit the target anyway but you could get it with fire. So, traditionally, we never hit anything we aimed at. Well, I use this as kind of a joke but, on the air drop, of course, Crossroads Able, we missed the target. The Army Air Corps did not hit the target. You see almost no pictures from that event, and the reason for that is the bomb went off above the ship that had all the cameras. It’s bound to happen. [ Laughing] And so the amount of information we got from that was not much. There are almost no pictures. I have two or three pictures that I dug up, the only decent pictures that exist of that event. [ R. Brownlee 2007 1- 4] Now were you involved in Crossroads? No. And then, in Crossroads Baker, the bomb was placed underwater, in the center of the fleet. But the Navy did exactly what the Navy always does. They have a sheet of paper that, at time plus one minute, you do this; time plus five minutes, you do this; time plus ten minutes, you do this. So immediately as the bomb went off, they followed their sheet, and they put men on those ships. And those ships had been— a water wave came over them, that was intensely radioactive. And so the Los Alamos people were saying, Don’t put anybody on the ships until we find out. But they followed the plan. So they put a lot of people back on the ships, and when they got there they discovered that the radiation levels were so high, everything was off scale, so it took time to pull them back. So they exposed unnecessarily huge numbers of people. Another other interesting thing to me about that [ was] the number of people there to watch were forty thousand or something. There were a whole lot of people in the Pacific with nothing to do after the war, and they all went to see this shot because it was the only thing going on, so there were huge numbers of people there, which by our standards, AEC [ Atomic Energy Commission] standards, was silly. They were there. And I think they were there because they UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 4 were bored. So there were huge numbers of people there, and a lot of exposure that was unnecessary. And they were convinced that their ships would survive. And so, when they saw the devastation, which was much more than the radiation: they put an aircraft carrier and the bottom fell out of it, and ships sank for some days. So the chaos was just so great that that they cancelled Crossroads Charlie. They were going to have three. So they only had the two tests. Well, this came as a shock to the Navy. I’m saying that with the bias of being an old Army man. It was really a shock to everybody, because the other things happened with nobody [ 00: 10: 00] watching. I mean you dropped it in Japan but we weren’t there, if I may put it that way. So when we did it ourselves and looked, then we learned. And the “ we” there is mostly military, because they were the ones that did not understand or appreciate the magnitude of what was going on. I think the guys in Los Alamos understood the magnitude of it, but the others, you have to see it to believe it. And so they learned an awful lot. And as a result, they said, OK, we have to have a big program, we have to have a series of tests, we have to understand what this effect is on us. And so, the goal at Los Alamos was stop the war, and once we’d done that, the Los Alamos scientists, many of them said, “ That’s it.” But the nation, I’ll put it that way, said, We have to learn more about this. So then we embarked upon a whole program, which eventually became just an AEC program, and in the earliest days, I’ve been told that when the military showed up at Los Alamos, there were people there who would tremble when they saw a man in a uniform, because they’d been so traumatized by the European things. And so, in my day, when our deputy director was Jane Hall, the military would come to Los Alamos and want to have tests for their purpose, and Jane Hall would serve them tea and say, We’re very busy right now and we just don’t have the time to do that. So one of the reasons for [ Lawrence] Livermore [ National Laboratory] was they needed a UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 5 responsive organization. And so I think you know this story. I probably don’t need to say more about that. But, in my talk to the UNWTOP people, I try to give them this feel of history, and then I show them our atmospheric tests, and all the things that we did, trying to understand, and then I describe the evolution into the underground part of our experience, and I played a significant role in that because, in 1956, my boss, Al [ Alvin C.] Graves, said, We’re going to have to go underground, so Brownlee, find out how to do that. So that was as early as 1956. Fifty- six. Yes. And what were his reasons for saying we had to, from your understanding? He recognized that we can’t go on testing in the atmosphere because of the fallout. We’re going to have to go underground. And so the purpose of going underground was strictly to eliminate the fallout. Now this is a question that may require some retrospect on your part, so at the time and in retrospect, do you think Al Graves was saying, the fallout itself is a problem, or the perception of the fallout, or some combination? The fallout itself is a problem. Al Graves was in Chicago [ Manhattan Project’s Metallurgical Laboratory, University of Chicago] under the stadium when they did their first thing [ nuclear chain reaction]. And Al Graves was a genius of the first water. I don’t think he was necessarily seen that way, at the time, because his role was different, but when I say “ genius of the first water,” I’m saying his ability to look ahead and see the future. He was way ahead of a lot of the others. And so he took it upon himself to do things. Let me give you an example. In the war, and I participated in this, you were permitted to sacrifice as many lives to achieve a military objective as needed. It was standard. So you are to UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 6 achieve this objective, and you sacrifice whatever to do that. And Al, in those days, felt that you must preserve human life. I went to the same church he did in Los Alamos. He was an elder in our church. It was not a denominational church; it was an interdenominational church. But he was a Christian and had certain Christian principles that I admire because I’m a Christian. And so as division leader of the Test Division, he said, Nothing that we do is worth the lives of one of my men. And at the time there were only men. And therefore, he created a system in our task [ 00: 15: 00] force. It was an out- of- the- record way to get information from anywhere in the ground floor to the top guy. And in the military system you can’t do that. So what he did was create a Hazard Evaluation Group, an HEG, and they sat under his armpit, and if anybody in the task force was concerned about tomorrow’s shot from a particular point of view, they could talk to us because they weren’t on record and they weren’t held responsible. If we thought that was important, we would go to Al and say, We think tomorrow’s shot should be postponed until this problem is solved, and he’d postpone it. And then we’d go back to that guy and we wouldn’t proceed until that guy felt we had solved the problem. Had NASA [ National Aeronautics and Space Administration] built a system like that, we would’ve saved the Challenger. But we had a system whereby, if somebody was really worried, you could call it off. This drove the military crazy, because it was the civilians controlling the joint task force of running a test in the atmosphere. But the civilians were almost invisible, and it all focused on the deputy commander who would say, No, I can’t do it. There’s something I will tell you that does not exist in any history book, but I don’t think I’m violating any classification at all. But in 1962, when they were at Christmas Island, Admiral [ Lloyd M.] Mustin was— there was going to be a test, and Bill Ogle was the scientific deputy UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 7 commander. And Bill Ogle said, We’re not ready to do the test, and it was, I think, a safety problem, and therefore we can’t do the test. And the Admiral said, I’m in charge and we’re going to do the test. And so Bill Ogle said, Well, certainly, you’re right, you are in charge, but I can’t have any of my men there, so we will just call and have the planes come from Honolulu and we’ll evacuate all of the Los Alamos people while you do the test. So the Admiral capitulated. And then I became the scientific deputy commander of the task force. And Bill Ogle told me this story. It had never gotten out anywhere but he said, You as scientific deputy, you just say, “ Fine,” to the military, you go do what you want, but we will not participate. And then evacuate your people, and you have that right. And he did it once. And of course he didn’t have to do it, because the Admiral capitulated. Al Graves started that kind of a policy: Whereas the military, had a decades- long habit, well, seven years’ habit, of sacrificing people for objectives, we are not going to do that. We are not going to do that. So therefore, we could stop a test if we were really worried. And the concern was not money, it was not schedule, it was lives, of our men. Now, if he had that about us, he had that same feeling about others. So that’s why I’m convinced that he, an old Los Alamos guy did not want to do things just to kill Japanese. So this thing I’ve told you has never— I’ve told a few people this story, in recent years, but you’ll not find it in any history. It was totally off the record. But it was a very significant event when the deputy commander says, Fine, you do as you want to do, but our people will not be there. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 8 [ 00: 20: 00] Right. I have several questions about this but do you recall, did that test eventually go? Yes, it went. It went when we were ready. I believe I’m the only person who knows it happened, who’s alive, and I don’t know the event. You don’t know the event, but it was a ’ 62, Christmas Island test. Yeah. The other interesting thing I wanted to comment about was that you seem to be indicating the mindset of World War II that you’re talking about, of sacrifice everyone for an objective, and then the war ends. But in the ending of it, I think there were people at Los Alamos who still had this idea, Let’s do a demonstration test. Let’s not actually drop it on them. And then the question arose: Yes, but we’ve only had one test, and let’s have a demonstration and have them look, and suppose it doesn’t go off? And that’s a sufficiently profound speculation that, I think had I been on the decision I would’ve said, OK, let’s not have a demonstration. I think I would’ve come to that conclusion. We’re trying to stop the war. Oh. Two- thirds of all the people killed in the Pacific from the beginning, the beginning being ’ 37, two- thirds of all the people killed in the Pacific were in the last ten months of the war. And every day the slaughter was bigger. And so we killed four hundred thousand people with those fire raids. Not a hint of surrender. If you look carefully, this is my opinion, the Germans bombing London didn’t bring the British to their knees. Their resolve was not to quit. It brought them to their knees in 1938, but when they bombed London, it went the other way. And so all of our bombing raids never tempted anybody to surrender, no matter what the devastation was. The nuclear thing [ was] an awesomely different thing, and that did bring them to surrender. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 9 So, I think had I been part of the business, I would have voted to go ahead and drop it on Hiroshima, or drop it somewhere, rather than ask for a demonstration test. But, there were people in Los Alamos at that time, and I was not there then, who said, Our object is not to kill people. Our object is to stop the war. Stop it. And the hope was that it would stop it. Do you know where Al Graves was on that question? No, I don’t. But his behavior, subsequently, was always consistent with demonstration tests, but he never told me that. Now, just briefly, what was your role when you were in the Pacific? I was in the Test Division. No, I mean during World War II. Oh. I was a navigator in B- 29s. So I arrived there just at the end of the war, and so I got there and saw the end. And then I got out, so I was back at the university in graduate school, at the time of Crossroads tests. Now, when you were a navigator on the B- 29s, did you go on bombing raids? No, I got there just at the end, so my missions were— we were hoping we’d be shot at, just for the record, but we never were. We flew over one island, hoping they would shoot us, but the Japanese were saving their ammo and they didn’t have much. So I got there right at the very end. But, you know, the guys there were aware that had been captured, in order to save our B- 29 crews. And I mixed with those guys. And they were kind of in awe that all those Marines [ 00: 25: 00] lost their lives just for us. It wasn’t for our planes; it was for us. And they didn’t have enough B- 29 crews. They had to keep them. Plenty of airplanes. And the guys in didn’t know that they were taking to save Army Air Corps lives. It’s a great oddity. I still, as UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 10 an Army Air Corps person, am in awe of the number of people who were sacrificed to save us. That’s very humbling. Because they didn’t know it. But the B- 29 crews knew it, and they were landing on before the place was completely captured. At any rate, a strange war. Well, let me come back to the subject. And the subject is, how did this unfold? And I try to give the classes that. And then I show them that, early on, we said, OK, we’re going to have to go underground, but how do we contain underground? Because the object of going underground was just to contain. And the experimenters didn’t want to go underground at all, so they wept and moaned and cried and carried on, because they were going to have to go underground. And the reason is, they were used to seeing, and seeing is believing, and all their detectors were to see. And so if we do it in a hole in the ground, we can’t look at anything. So their first goal was, Let’s put it in the ground but let’s still look, so we want to have an open pipe, which allows us to look in. And the containment people said, No, we want to close that pipe off. So, at the beginning, we said, OK, we’ll let the light come out, so that people can look in, and then we’ll close everything off. And then we had to learn how to do that. I’ll go back. I got my clearance in ’ 55 so I’ve had it fifty- two years, and so the first test I saw was in February of ’ 55, here [ at the Nevada Test Site, NTS]. But it’s incredible. Two of us, just out of graduate school, were given the job of measuring the opacity of uranium. And the reason you needed to do that was— a reason— the radiation from the primary flows down the channel to implode the secondary, but the channel has uranium gas in it. How does that radiation flow to do that? So, the opacity is the determination of what happens to the photons as it tries to go through that cloud of uranium. The theoreticians needed that. Well, two of us just out of graduate school were given the job: Measure the opacity of uranium gas. So, we were, I’m going to say theoreticians— that’s not true, close to that— and so we did calculations, and then we said, Well, we’ll need this and we’ll need that and UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 11 we’ll need this. And so starting in ’ 55, we said what you need for that experiment. And that experiment was Lacrosse. And it was a forty- kiloton bomb. Device. Not really a bomb. You understand the difference. I do. Yes. It was a forty- kiloton device in a hohlraum, a tank, which came to the same temperature. And then we had portholes, looking in, and we had forty lines- of- sight, forty portals, and in each porthole we put an sandwich of material, so the same energy, light, trying to come through that, would come through different than it did through that sandwich, which was different than through the other sandwich. And we had uranium in there, uranium gas and various things, and so we were measuring how the light came through each sandwich, and we had forty of them. And then we had vacuum pipes coming from there, for a long ways, to an array, and then the light came through to an array of cameras, and the cameras sent the light [ 00: 30: 00] down the lagoon, to where��� I’m sorry, the mirrors, where we had an array of mirrors, to cameras, where we could record— capture the film. So we had to have the cameras far enough away that it would be effective. I found out later that that experiment cost forty million dollars, in 1956, and they did anything we told them. We need this, we’d like to have that, OK. So I describe it as a golden age because at no time was money ever discussed with us, and yet I was only thirty- one, and the other guy was thirty. And who was he? Art Cox. Now we had help, don’t misunderstand me. We had very great help from a theoretician. I’ll say his name in a minute [ Burt Freeman]. And so he should be named too if we’re remembering. But the remarkable thing was the engineers: We had the finest engineers in the UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 12 world, we would wave our hands and say what we wanted, and they built it. So when we arrived, that was the first test in 1956, because we had to get that out of the way before we could do the other atmospheric test, because this had to be perfectly aligned, all that, so it was the first. So when we went out in ’ 56, we had to do that shot first. That was very successful. And since that was the first shot, then I worked and started— in graduate school I had run an astronomical photography lab, so they said, Go help with the photography. So I started developing film and doing all of that sort of thing. And then, I hate to share this on record because it’ll sound like I’m bragging, but it’s a part of the record at any rate. And then Al Graves came to me and said, We’re terribly impressed by the job you’ve done, so here’s a big raise. And he gave me the raise just in the middle of the year, but he gave it as so much a month. And, for the rest of my career— sometimes you got raises of a percentage, or whatever, but I got that raise without, and it was big at the time; I have no idea how much that was worth to me but in my career, a million bucks or something. At any rate, so the job we did on that caused Al to have a lot of confidence in me, I think, so from that time on, every so often, he would tell me, OK, so you go do that. Well, I was an astronomer, an astrophysicist. I didn’t know anything about geology. And he said, Well, you go find out how to do that. Well, so let me explain the problem. The pressures and temperatures from an atom bomb are so huge, how can anything stay in the ground? How can the ground possible contain that? So the question is not how do you— was, how does anything stay in the ground? So when we first started, we had no way of knowing what would happen. And we learned in very short order, that if we just have an open hole, put the bomb at the bottom, don’t do anything, you can cut the fallout by 90 percent. Now that’s a significant lesson. Then we put a plug halfway down the hole, and we could cut the fallout to 95 percent. We put the plug at the bottom, but still an open hole, UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 13 we could cut the fallout by 98 percent or something like that. So what we recognized was, we could enormously reduce the fallout if we just put a bomb in the bottom of a hole; you don’t have to fill the hole. [ 00: 35: 00] But then, it didn’t take long until the goal was “ not one atom out.” So when we got ready to do a limited test ban treaty, there were two versions of the treaty, one in English, one in Russian. And the English version read, Not one atom out. Now I’m not being literal but the only sensible interpretation was not one atom out. So we hollered, and said the two versions were different. In the Russian version, essentially, it was You can’t have any bad atoms out, but they get to decide which are the bad atoms. And there is a practical reason for that. We were shooting in the only place in the world where we had a chance at keeping everything down. I say “ the only place in the world.” It’s almost literally true. And [ with] the Russians, there was no possibility of them keeping every atom down. So they were fighting for that. Well, Harriman was our ambassador, so we got word to Harriman that the two treaties, the two languages are different. And he said, Oh, pay no attention to that. And so Al Graves told me, Brownlee, quit complaining. Our goal is not one atom out. Don’t worry about the Russians, just us. Not one atom out. Now, the problem. So we could cut the fallout by 98 percent or 99 percent, but how do you cut that last 1 percent? And we spent millions and millions and millions of dollars to try to make sure that not one atom came out. All the while the Russians have stuff out every time. And I just said, This is totally unfair and irrational, and Al [ said], Forget that. Not one atom out. The first learning process was while we were still doing atmospheric tests, so therefore it was all right to have something out. That was not illegal. And what we recognized, we’d really been successful at keeping a lot of the fallout. And then it’s true that, no matter what the yield, I can built a hole of the diameter that you need, deep enough that I don’t need to fill it. It’ll close UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 14 itself off. Nobody wants to go that deep. It’s too expensive. But you can win complete containment by just spending money, namely by putting a really deep hole. Like what would be really deep? Oh, six thousand feet. You know. But, when I think of the cost of such a— well, at any rate, so, if you’re going to do an experiment at a reasonable cost, and that doesn’t mean cheap, a reasonable cost, to keep one atom out you’re going to have to be clever. And so we polished and honed and did all kinds of things for years, trying to learn how to do that. We were, I’m going to say, enormously successful, almost all the time. When we failed, it was because there was a brand new something, which we hadn’t spotted, before. And so each failure, we analyzed the failure and said, OK, we’re now smart enough to know we won’t do that again. So, the failures got rarer and rarer, but each one we studied and said, We’ll never repeat that kind of a failure. So the failures were enormously educational, because we made them that way. And, what that meant was, as long as we were testing here, in a region where we had thousands of holes and knew a lot about it, then I could sit like this and say, This shot ain’t going to come out. It’s fine. This business of pretending it’s going to come out is nonsense. You don’t need to do that. We’re not going to be surprised here. But, if we had gone over to the next valley, then I would have said, all bets are off. I don’t know. I’ve not learned anything about that valley. So the importance of the [ 00: 40: 00] test site was, when I say, we have essentially the only place in the world, it’s not true, but the only known place in the world where we can do an underground test with enormous confidence, you don’t need to worry about this, because we’re deliberately putting it in a place where we’ve understood the surprises. Does that make se