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Interview with Harold Melvin Agnew, October 10, 2005


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Narrator affiliation: Physicist; Director, Los Alamos National Laboratory

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Agnew, Harold Melvin. Interview, 2005 October 10. 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 Harold M. Agnew October 10, 2005 Solana Beach, California 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 Harold M. Agnew October 10, 2005 Conducted by Mary Palevsky Table of Contents Introduction: Birth, family background, education, early life in Denver, CO 1 Marriage, move to University of Chicago, and work at Met Lab 3 Works with Enrico Fermi at Columbia University and University of Chicago 6 Impressions of Enrico Fermi 7 Memories of doctoral exams at University of Chicago 10 Friendship with Richard Garwin 12 Studies with Enrico Fermi at University of Chicago 13 Compares “ doing science” yesterday and today, talks about accidents at Los Alamos 14 Moves to Los Alamos and joins P- Division, works on DIRX, participates in Operations Ivy ( Mike) and Castle ( Bravo) 15 Reflects on Oppenheimer hearings and Edward Teller 19 Discusses political activity in New Mexico, transfer to NATO as science advisor, return to Los Alamos to become Weapons Division leader and then director of Los Alamos National Laboratory, and resignation because of problems with the University of California over salaries 23 Thoughts about Norris Bradbury 24 Talks about design of thermonuclear devices for Pacific tests 26 Discusses author John Coster- Mullen’s investigation of Little Boy and Fat Man and return to Tinian for a reunion with people involved in Pacific tests 27 Recalls story of Teller and his knowledge of Fat Man 32 Talks about size of nuclear devices and deliverability 35 Involvement with Chinese scientists and his visits to China and Lop Nor test site 37 Describes development of PAL ( Permissive Action Link) 40 Discusses feelings about India, Pakistan, and Nonproliferation Treaty 43 Returns to development of PAL with Don Cotter and talks about military opposition to PAL technology 45 Talks about becoming director of Los Alamos and relationship with the military customer 46 Returns to Chinese and their interest in the Mark- 12A 48 Opinion on efficacy of Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and treaties in general, and the possible need for testing 50 Conclusion: protection of weapons in era of terrorism 51 UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 1 Interview with Harold M. Agnew October 10, 2005 in Solana Beach, CA Conducted by Mary Palevsky [ 00: 00: 00] Begin Track 2, Disc 1. Mary Palevsky: Harold Agnew, thank you for meeting with me this morning. If you could start by just telling me your full name, place of birth and date of birth, and a little bit about your family background, that would be great. Harold M. Agnew: Harold Agnew. Born in Denver, Colorado on March 28, 1921. My dad originally was a stonecutter. Born in New York City; so was my mother. And as a stonecutter he traveled west, building courthouses; they were made of stone in those days. They ended up in Denver where he was, I guess, the foreman of the Civic Center there, which is a big limestone edifice, so to speak. He got sort of a form of silicosis which stonecutters got in those days, so he became a salesman for a roofing company called the Western Elaterite Roofing Company and that’s what he did until he died. We lived in South Denver. I went to South Denver High School and then the University of Denver, and then later on the University of Chicago after the war. Right. Now was your dad born in this country? Were your parents born in this country? New York City, both of them. He was born on Bleecker Street in Manhattan. I think his father, who had come over from Ireland, was a bartender. He had five or six sisters. And his mother died when he was a baby. They were married— In Denver. In Denver. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 2 I don’t know much about her family. Her father was German but he actually was brought up in Britain. Her mother was Polish, but I think she was born in this country a long time ago. But I don’t know anything about them. Did you have interests in science or mechanics or anything like that when you were a kid? Yes, I had a chemistry set. I always liked to do things with my hands, so I had a chemistry set and used to do things in the basement of our house. I liked to go fishing and hunting. It was different in those days in Denver. Denver must’ve been a lot different in those days. Oh, entirely different, yes. Cherry Creek was fairly close to where we lived and you could go there with your BB gun and walk along the creek. Now it’s all built up with houses and things. We had a vacant lot next to our house and somebody said a vacant lot is part of growing up. There weren’t any girls in our neighborhood, only boys. We dug caves in this vacant lot and covered them over. We’d steal potatoes from our house and have a little bonfire and cook the potatoes in the bonfire. I thought it was great. You were born in ’ 21, so Pearl Harbor comes and you’re in college at the time? I was just finishing college. I was to graduate in June or May of ’ 42. Well, no, Pearl Harbor was ’ 41. And Beverly and I, well, we’d gone through high school together and college together, and we both signed up to join the Army Air Corps as soon as the war happened. But we were told, or I was told, don’t sign the papers. Wait. And it was in January that Joyce Stearns, who became deputy director of the Met Lab [ Metallurgical Laboratory, University of Chicago], who had been chair of the physics department at Denver, was told that if he had any living bodies that could read and write and hadn’t been drafted, to bring them with him. So I went with him in January 1942 to the Met Lab, and stayed at the International House. I had enough credits so I could just UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 3 graduate. I didn’t have to go back. Beverly didn’t, so she stayed back and then on May 2nd I went [ 00: 05: 00] back and we got married. I came on a Friday, we were married on Saturday and went on the train to Chicago, and Monday she went to work as the secretary for the head of the project, Richard L. Doan. And she was his secretary. Richard L. Doan was the head of the Met Lab. [ Arthur Holly] Compton was above that. He was in some sort of administrative position. But the head of the Met Lab was Richard L. Doan, who had gotten his degree at Chicago. Most all the guys there were graduates of the University of Chicago. Doan had gone to work for Phillips Petroleum, and he came and took over as director or whatever it was called then. Stearns was the deputy. Right. Because I guess I always think of Compton as being the director, but you’re saying he was even higher in the hierarchy. He was higher than that. He wasn’t really involved in the nuts and bolts of the organization— I’ve got an organizational chart someplace; the early one. That’d be great to see. I’ll make a note to ask you for that at some point. I can copy it. I don’t know where it is. I’ve got it on a slide. Oh, really? Oh, that’d be neat. Yes, but I won’t give it to you. No, no, I would make a copy of it. I may have one. I don’t know. I talked to you a little bit about this before but it’d be interesting to go over again. You spoke the last time we met about how you really felt that you wanted to be involved in the war effort. Sure. Everybody did. And that when you got there you felt that this was satisfying that need? UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 4 Well, I didn’t know what it was about. How did you find out? Oh, it was quite a bit later. Just did. People would say, What did you do during the war? I’d say, Whatever I was told to do. It wasn’t till maybe several months later that I started to catch on, because I was assigned to work in a group with Herb Anderson; Herb was one of Fermi’s right- hand people. [ Walter] Zinn, Anderson, and Fermi really ran the Met Lab. There was no question about who was in charge. Herb had the night shift on CP One and Zinn had the day shift and Fermi was in charge. There was no question about it. What was going on there and who was doing what was pretty much, even in theory, directed by Fermi. An illegal alien, he was called, so he couldn’t be in charge, but he was in charge and the organizational chart shows where he fit in. So they were called enemy aliens in those days? Well, he was an enemy alien. Because he was Italian. He was an Italian citizen. And the only reason he got out was because Laura was— her family was Jewish, and he saw the handwriting on the wall. He was not allowed to leave but he got the Nobel Prize and he just kept going. He’d been negotiating with Columbia way before that, trying to figure it out. Columbia University has a lot of documentation on Fermi’s correspondence with, I think, [ George] Pegram at Columbia. I think that’s right. And also even in some of his letters he says, Don’t answer to my address. Send them to somebody else. Because evidently his mail was being watched. But Columbia had a thing for UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 5 him on his would- have- been- 100 birthday a couple of years ago and they even put out a booklet of these letters between Fermi and Columbia, which is really interesting. I’ll get that. I’ll track that down. I don’t know who was there— it was put on by the Italian something- or- other at Columbia. I can research that. Several years ago. I don’t know. What year would he have been born? Around—? He was born— Around 1900, would you say? No, I think it’s— he was either fifty- three or fifty- four when he died in either ’ 53 or ’ 54, so he was born in ’ 01, I think. So you’re at Chicago and what kind of stuff do they have you doing originally? [ 00: 10: 00] Well, since I had been working at Denver with— see, Denver had a direct tie with Chicago, because they have a cosmic ray lab on top of Mount Evans. The big nuclear thing at Chicago was cosmic rays at that time, so they had pretty good contact. I had been, I don’t know how, but I’d become acquainted with Geiger counters and circuits and stuff like that, so they put me to work. I made Geiger counters at Chicago and also did a lot of things working with a radium beryllium source. We had no monitors or anything. That’s how I sort of got cooked a little bit. But I just pretty much did whatever Herb wanted. I spent some time building CP- 1, fooling with those big things of graphite, getting all dirty. So I did pretty much everything. Right. Now at some point in that, you go back to Columbia, though, is that right? Well, that was at the very beginning. At the very beginning. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 6 At the very beginning, when I arrived, I was immediately sent up to Columbia where Fermi was. Fermi was still at Columbia. He had a small pile there, and we did experiments on the pile, again doing what I was told to do. We’d irradiate Indium foils and then run down and count them and then run back, put in foils. Fermi did it with us. After about two weeks of that, John Manley went up there with me, too. But after a couple of weeks of that, things weren’t going very well and they were going to do something to increase the hydrogen content of his pile, which had been evacuated to get the air out. He thought nitrogen was causing a problem. Elizabeth Graves was there. We were going to fill the thing with propane. There we are on like the fourth floor of Pupin or Schermerhorn or whatever the name of the building was, and here we’re going to fill this thing with propane. It was a big thing, about an eight- foot cube. And Diz [ Elizabeth Graves] said, Well, it’s evacuated. We can get it in, but how are we going to get it out? It’s an explosive mixture. So we didn’t put it in and Fermi called Compton and said, I think we’d better come to Chicago. We’d better come someplace else. Then I guess Compton, or Sam Allison went to [ Robert Maynard] Hutchins and convinced him that it was safe and we could use one of the racket courts, the squash courts. So we just moved back to Chicago and then started building a pile. I got to working on counters, working with radium beryllium sources, irradiating things, measuring, scattering a cross- section of paraffin, and things like that. Now when you’re married, then, where did you live with your wife? We lived in the Blackstone Mansions, I think it was called; got an apartment there. And then from there we moved to a lady’s house, Mrs. Bailey I think it was— she lived there but she had a big apartment or a house, I guess it was a house. We had a bedroom and kitchen privileges. She UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 7 was a funny old lady, she stayed out of the way. But anyway, we lived there until we moved to Los Alamos. Right. So I know you were present at the chain reaction. You talked about that. Well, obviously by this time you know something— you know what’s going on. Well, I knew that but I still wasn’t very clear about the bomb business. See, there was this argument going on between [ John R.] Dunning [ Jr.] at Columbia who said the emphasis should be on separating [ U] 235 and Fermi who said the emphasis should be on plutonium and the reactor. He was also busy at Hanford I guess, he and [ Eugene] Wigner and Manson Benedict, they essentially designed the Hanford Works; Wigner, Fermi, and Benedict. Anyway, it doesn’t matter. But they were the main designers of the Hanford. People talk a lot about what an interesting person Fermi was, but as a young man and here’s this European Nobel Prize winner, what were your impressions of him? Well, you know, after the war, we couldn’t find a place to live and he and Laura just took us in [ 00: 15: 00] with our daughter. We lived with them for three months. They had a problem in that Laura had not seen her sister since the war, since they left in ’ 38, and this is now ’ 45. No, it was ’ 46— we went back to go to school. So she wanted to go. They had the kids, Giulio and Nella, and Enrico knew what we were looking; I was living with Herb Anderson and Aaron Novak, on his couch actually. This is after the war. After the war. I was living with them, on his couch, trying to find a place to live, and Fermi was aware of this. He said, Well, why don’t you and Beverly, and Beverly was still in Denver with her parents, you can come live with us because Laura’s going to go to Italy and Beverly can run the house and you can take care of the lawn and whatever has to be done. So we just lived there. I was asking Beverly who bought the food, we UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 8 couldn’t afford the food for— we can’t remember who bought the food. Fermi never bought the food. Nella was just a little girl and Giulio was just really a little kid, so I guess Beverly did the shopping and maybe he reimbursed her or just gave her money, I don’t know how it worked. Now did you have a child at this point? Yes. We had a daughter who was born in ’ 44, so she would’ve been two years old. And what’s her name? Nancy. She just retired. Her birthday was yesterday, the ninth. So what is she? Sixty- one? Retired from what, may I ask? IBM. She was some systems something. I would ask her and she’d say, You wouldn’t understand. So I don’t understand. That’s amazing. So the Fermis had a house, I guess. Oh, a very nice house. They had a three- story house; upstairs was a ballroom, and once a month we would have square dances. He would invite kids. And I at that time knew how to call a little bit, so I would be the caller. Afterwards they’d have punch and cookies. But they were young kids, like Jay Orear who’s been at Cornell He was younger than I was, but he and a guy named Arthur H. Rosenfeld. I remember those two graduate students. And anyway, it was sort of nice. He liked young people. Fermi liked young people. I remember once when Laura came back, we still didn’t have a house, so we all lived there. And they would once in a while have guests, and he would always say, Well, we need to get some young people. These people have to be “ diluted.” That was his word for some of his colleagues. Right. Deluded. That’s great. But you eventually found a place. Eventually found a place in a carriage house behind a Kealey Beer mansion, so we lived there. It was pretty grim. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 9 So once the war was over and you decided to go back to graduate school, in what ways had the war work influenced what you were deciding to do? Well, I wanted to go back and stay in physics and Fermi said fine, come on back. He got me a National Research Council Fellowship which wasn’t very much, $ 125 a month I think, but in those days we could live on that. And we finally found a place. We had some savings. I made a deal with a guy who had a big house on I think it was Fifty- Fifth Street, I’m not sure. If he would make an apartment out of the back part of his house, I would pay for that and then he would prorate the rent. We had just enough till I finished my graduate work and got out of there. But it worked out. But your undergraduate degree is in? Chemistry or physics or I don’t know what. Chemistry. And you had said when I talked to you last time that if these things hadn’t happened, you probably would’ve become a schoolteacher, is that right? Yes, I was going to be a schoolteacher and a professor named Byron Cohn at the University of Denver who was a physical [ 00: 20: 00] chemist also graduated the University of Chicago said no, I should go on to graduate school. I’d gotten a scholarship or whatever you call it, a graduate thing at Yale and had been accepted, so I had a tuition thing to go to Yale, but then the war happened, so we didn’t do that. So people were aware that you had more potential than— Something. I don’t know. So you’re now in physics at Chicago, obviously. Yes. And how long were you there? UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 10 Well, I went back in ’ 46 and I got a master’s in ’ 48 and doctorate in ’ 49. In a hurry. It was a very terrifying experience. Why? Well, anybody could come, and you had to take an exam to see whether you would either get a master’s or get out, or go on for a doctorate if you could find somebody that would take you on. And the exams were done without names; you were given a number, so the graders didn’t know who you were either. In my class there have been since four Nobel laureates. And you’re all competing unnamed for this exam. They dictated that— well, some people flunked and were never heard of again. Other people passed and got a master’s and were told to go away. I was lucky enough somehow to pass and was told if you could find somebody that would take you on, you could go on. I went to Fermi and he said OK. But it was the most terrifying experience. Lois Garwin tells me that Dick [ Richard L. Garwin] was even terrified. Wow. That is terrifying then. And he’s not one of the Nobel laureates. I know. But we had [ Tsung- Dao] Lee and [ Frank] Yang [ Chen Ning Yang] and [ Owen] Chamberlain and [ Jack] Steinberger. All subsequently got Nobel Prizes. And they were all in that cohort? All of us together. In fact I shared an office with Chamberlain. It was very scary because most of these guys had a master’s. Not Garwin, but most of them already had a master’s, so it was very unpleasant for me in graduate school. Terrifying. Everybody knew everything. I didn’t know anything. Well, you must’ve known something. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 11 I don’t know. I still get a worry about that, that whole thing, what might’ve been. What do you mean? What if you’d have flunked? What if you hadn’t been, you know, what would you do? There you are, isolated in Chicago, a wife and a child, it was scary. So the exam was for how long? Three days. Written. They gave you questions each day. Problems of some kind, I guess. All kinds— I remember a problem in quantum mechanics, a problem in how to design a submarine to go so many feet down, another problem on they mixed two metals and they wanted to know what the melting point would be at a eutectic. Really strange questions, none of which, except the quantum mechanic thing, had anything to do with any of the courses we’d ever taken. Strange, strange bunch of questions. You have to explain what a “ eutectic” is. Well, let’s say something melts at 100 degrees and something melts at 50 degrees and you mix them together, they usually melt at something between those and that’s the eutectic. All right, and you have to determine what that would be. You have to determine what that is. You know I couldn’t do it now, but everything I did— that was one from my physical chemistry— I sort of had a clue on, and I think I did that one real well. The submarine one is just a matter of— it wasn’t a submarine, it was a submersible to go down a couple of thousand feet. So you had to talk about the structure, and there had to be a person in it, so you had to be smart enough to say you have to have oxygen, you [ 00: 25: 00] had to get rid of the carbon dioxide. Really, really weird— for a doctoral exam, it was very strange. And how long did you have to wait, do you remember? Was there an excruciating waiting time? UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 12 Probably about a week. It was on the bulletin board and it was a number. Just said the number: these numbers passed. I had a little slip that had my number. Wow. That’s scary. Wow. That’s an amazing story. Don’t want to go through that again, ever. But the thing that amazed me was when Lois Garwin told me that Dick couldn’t sleep, he was terrified, too. But he would walk out an hour early. We had a fixed time on it. He would always leave early. Now he was Fermi’s student, too, you were saying? Yes, the two us were students. We’re still very close. In fact he called me last night but it was too late for me; I tried to call him today and he wasn’t there. I saw him a while back. I talked to him about testing and arms control. I wanted to ask about those kinds of things. He’s a really interesting guy. We agree on most things but some things we don’t agree on at all. I believe in testing; he doesn’t, or he says there’s no need for it. I think he believes in it but he says there’s no— he likes the CPB [ Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty]; I think it’s nonsense. It’s things like that. Yes. We talked about the treaty. So what was your work with Fermi? What did he set before you as your task? Well, there was a beta ray spectrometer that had started to be built, so he said, Why don’t you take that over and see if you can make it work? So I did that and I introduced some novel scheme to try to see lower- energy electrons. Anyway, it was OK. It passed whatever the criteria were and it got published. Then I wrote up the thing in Physical Review about it or whatever. I think it was called “ Review of Scientific Instruments,” the thing that was written up. A guy at Chicago, Cronin, Jim Cronin, he dug all this out. Somehow Chicago screwed up all my records. I’ve got my Doctor in Physics and so on, but they had me in some weird UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 13 category, so I wasn’t listed as being a student of Fermi’s. I wasn’t a student of anybody’s. Maybe Allison, and that was just nonsense. And at some conference, [ Marvin] Goldberger wanted to know why wasn’t I listed as a student of Fermi, because he’d been there and he knew I was a student. I said I didn’t know that I wasn’t. Well, after a long thing, Cronin finally dug out what had happened. See, I didn’t stay to get my degree. I got it and left to go to Los Alamos. I didn’t stay around. Anyway, he tells me it’s all straightened out now. So it shows you as a student of Fermi’s at that time. That’s what he tells me, but you might talk to Jim. He’s a nice man. OK, I’ll ask him. I’ve never met him. He knew my dad [ Harry Palevsky] and I know who he is. He got a Nobel Prize. I know. Yeah. So I’ll give him a call. Give him a call. Tell him you talked with me and I was still confused as to whether this whole thing had been straightened out. Will do. So what was it like for you doing that work? Did you enjoy it? Did you enjoy science? Oh, yes, I always liked tinkering, I guess. Science in those days was fun. I don’t think it’s any fun today because they have teams and they’re enormous teams and all the equipment you buy. You don’t make anything, which people don’t realize, even O- rings didn’t exist. People [ say] what do you mean, O- rings didn’t exist? They must’ve come with the Ten Commandments. No way. There were no O- rings. We used a lot of glass. Vacuum pumps were made out of glass, diffusion pump. Everything was just different. It was fun. I just don’t think it’s any fun today, really. I guess if you’re brought up with the way it is today, if you like it, you like it. But you had different kinds of challenges along with—? UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 14 Yes, and today all the nonsense on security and all the nonsense on safety, you know, people [ 00: 30: 00] just paid attention. We had bad accidents: Louis [ Slotin] and [ Harry] Daghlian and had a bad one with Jim Kelly at Los Alamos. What was the Jim Kelly one? Oh, we were storing plutonium waste. Now this was after the war or during the war? After the war, when I was at Los Alamos. I guess there was a sludge buildup at the bottom of this vessel and he turned on a mixer and it went critical and he got cooked. It changed everything, the way people handle those things now. That was a vessel like this— A few feet. — and now all the vessels are like this, so you can’t go critical. They’re all— Smaller. — skinny things now. I see. It was just the geometry of the vessel that did that. Just no one had thought about that, that there could be enough plutonium in the sludge to actually— sort of like a water boiler. Didn’t cause any explosion or anything, but it was just a high radiation field, and he was right there by a switch, I guess. So back to the timeline. You get your degree and then you immediately go to Los Alamos? Go to Los Alamos. Now what was the deal there? Had you known that they would want you or you wanted them or what was the deal? UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 15 Well, they knew that I wanted to come back, and we went back. I joined P- Division. Dick [ Richard F.] Taschek was the group leader. Art [ Arthur] Hemmendinger was the deputy group leader. I know Art. Is Art still alive? We’ve sent him Christmas cards. We don’t hear from him. He is. I’ll tell you, I saw Art and Peggy because they were friends of my parents and were actually in the car when my parents, at the end of the war, July ’ 45, said they were going to be married, so they were friends. I see. Was your dad at Cal Tech then? At Los Alamos. Oh, at Los Alamos. Because I know Art was a Cal Tech graduate. Right, but this was in ’ 45. OK, I didn’t realize. Yes. So they were all in Los Alamos. And so my husband and I went up for dinner at the Hemmendingers’ in that nice house they have out in Santa Fe and they were both in remarkably good shape, but they may not be doing Christmas cards anymore. I don’t know. Well they just— it’s been two years in a row we haven’t heard from them, so we didn’t know. Yes. They seemed in really quite amazingly good shape. OK. How long ago was this you saw them? The summer? No, six months ago. I was there in May. OK, fine. Yes, I’d say five, six months ago. So you joined P- Division. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 16 Yes. And stayed in P- Division until ’ 50 when we decided to go thermonuclear, joined a thing called DIRX. I was the project manager, or project engineer I guess they call it, on the [ Castle] Bravo shot. The two Runts were mine, and those were the ones that were actually stockpiled and named Mark- 17, I think. [ Operation Castle: Romeo, Runt I; Yankee, Runt II] Yes, let me ask you about that because you have to explain to me what kind of work you did in P- Division first of all. We just measured cross- sections on the Van de Graaff. Day after day after day. And then when the decision was made to go thermonuclear, you worked on you said DIRX? It was called DIRX. It was something that [ Norris] Bradbury had formed under Marshall Holloway and that’s the reason at least Teller says he left, because he couldn’t stand Holloway. Neither could I, but he was my boss. Why couldn’t you stand him? It was just the funny way he ran things. He was not a collegial guy. He never told you anything of what was going on. You know I had I guess been brought up under the Fermi school of everybody was on a team and you knew what was going on, and he [ Holloway] just said, You just do your work and you report to me how you’re doing and that’s that. And all of us in fact, Ben Diven, myself, Bob Shreffler, Wally [ Leland], we all didn’t like him. Wally Leland, he’s dead and so is “ Shreff.” But you were all in that group, that DIRX group. We were all DIRX. We were the four DIRX. See, there was Shrimp, that was Ben Diven, that [ 00: 35: 00] was the first one. Wally had Jughead, which was liquid deuterium, which was never tested. And Schrefler had Alarm Clock, I guess it was called, and it wasn’t tested. Maybe it was tested. I’m not sure. I can’t remember. The two Runts were tested and they went. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 17 And what were they called? I mean I have the list here what they’re called but you have another name. The device name is different. The device names were Runt. Runt I and Runt II. Oh, they were. OK. Yes. I don’t know why. And I think the first shot, Runt One, was Bravo. Shrimp was Bravo, I think. No, I think it was Romeo, wasn’t it? I don’t know. Maybe you’ve got it. The first shot was Bravo. Fifteen megatons. OK, then that’s Shrimp. That’s what I thought, yes. So then maybe I have Romeo. It was the second one. Eleven megatons. Yes. Does it say Runt? No, this list doesn’t give me that translation. And then we’ve got the Livermore one, and then three more, Union, Yankee, Nectar. But I can look up— It doesn’t matter. I’ve got it someplace. It doesn’t matter to me. There were two Runts. So explain to me, you’re trying different configurations? Where? On these tests, these designs? Yes, they were different. The first one had very highly enriched lithium. S