Rothe, Robert

Rothe, Robert
Rothe, Robert, 1935-, interviewee; Nordhaus, Hannah, interviewer;
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Places: Rocky Flats nuclear weapons plant


Topics: education in physics, work at Rocky Flats beginning in 1964 in the Critical Mass Laboratory, “The Technically Useful History of the Rocky Flats Critical Mass Laboratory” by Robert Rothe, nuclear criticality safety, no criticality accidents at Rocky Flats, explanation of the concept of criticality including prompt criticalities and delayed criticalities, Building 886 which contained the Critical Mass Laboratory, criticality experiments, internationally significant research into the handling of fissile materials, nuclear weapons as a deterrent to war, nuclear fission theory, use of Raschig rings and other materials to enable storage of fissionable liquids without criticality, contamination and safety related accidents at Rocky Flats, emphasis at Rocky Flats on safety, change in safety regulations from the 1960s to the 1990s, 903 pad contamination, 1969 fire, misrepresentations of Rocky Flats and radiatiion risks by the media, risks of plutonium radiation, contamination and ingestion, beryllium and berylliosis, escalation of security procedures at Rocky Flats, classified information, aftermath of the FBI raid, need for more criticality safety experiments, thoughts about nuclear weapons, Rocky Flats Cold War Museum, disposal of uranium solution and contaminated Raschig rings during cleanup, concern about valuable historical and scientific artifacts being discarded during the cleanup, women workers at Rocky Flats, description of buildings and suggestions for design improvements, proposal for a new criticality laboratory that never ended up getting funded, difference between construction blueprints and the as-built buildings, demolition of Rocky Flats buildings, relations with union workers, comparison of different contractors at Rocky Flats, satisfactions of doing research at Rocky Flats, frustrations of increasing red tape and security measures.



Rothe, Robert, 1935-
Rocky Flats Plant (U.S.)
Criticality (Nuclear engineering)
Nuclear weapons plants Safety measures Colorado Rocky Flats.
Radioactive waste disposal Colorado Rocky Flats.
Boulder (Colo.) History Biography.
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