January 16, 2009

PBS: The Trials of J. Robert Oppenheimer

PBS's American Experience will be airing The Trials of J. Robert Oppenheimer.



Robert Oppenheimer's life and legacy are inextricably linked to America's most famous top-secret initiative -- the Manhattan Project. But after World War II, this brilliant and intense scientist, tasked with the development of the atomic bomb and widely considered one of the most important minds of the twentieth century, fell from the innermost circles of American scientific policy. At the height of the Red Scare, the veil of suspicion fell over J. Robert Oppenheimer. He was accused of having communist sympathies and was pressed to explain his relationships with known communists.

This biography will present a complex and revealing portrait of one of the most influential American scientists. Interweaving interviews with family members, scholars and colleagues with dramatic recreations featuring Academy Award-nominated actor David Strathairn (Good Night, and Good Luck, and The Bourne Ultimatum), this film follows J. Robert Oppenheimer on a fascinating arc from the heady world of international physics to the top-secret Manhattan Project, and finally to the dark days of the Red Scare and McCarthyism.

To find your local PBS station and the show, visit http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/oppenheimer/

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January 06, 2009

The carbon footprint of nuclear war

Almost 700m tonnes of CO2 would be released into the Earth's atmosphere by even the smallest nuclear conflict, according to a US study that compares the environmental costs of developing various power sources. [via The Guardian]

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