The History Of Atoms

This timeline relates to the events leading to the development of nuclear weapons which derive destructive energy from the release of atomic energy in nuclear weapons and atomic bombs. At the beginning of the 20th century scientists realized the atom could be split and the atom's elementary building blocks the electron, proton, and neutron were mapped which led to the discovery of nuclear fission transforming the atom into a new and powerful source of energy.

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Isaac Newton

1704

Modelled the atom using billiard balls.

Periodic Table

1869

Mendeleev produces the Periodic Table.

Electro magnetic field

1873

James Clerk Maxwell: introduced the electro magnetic field around atoms.

Electrons

1897

J.J. Thompson: discovered electrons using cathode rays, showed that glowing matter wasn't light waves

Manhattan Project

1939 - 1945

The top-secret atomic energy program, known as the Manhattan Project, employed scientists under the direction of J. Robert Oppenheimer to develop the first transportable atomic bomb and produce the plutonium and uranium-235 necessary for nuclear fission.

Atomic Energy Act of 1954

1954

The U.S. Congress passed the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 allowing the Atomic Energy Commission to license private companies to use nuclear materials and build nuclear power plants.