#TBT – Goudsmit, Yoakum, Heisenberg, Fermi, Kraus (1939)

July_1939_photo

Photo: Courtesy of Jack Kraus (Son of John Kraus)

Caption from Big Ear Two – Listening For Other-Worlds by John Kraus (1995)

“From the left, Samuel Goudsmit, of electron-spin fame, Dean Clarence Yoakum of Graduate School, Werner Heisenberg of the “Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle”, Enrico Fermi, the discoverer of element 93 (neptunium) and the architect of the neutrino, and John Kraus (me). I took this picture after a Sunday dinner at our home in 1939. Three years later, Fermi created the first self-sustained chain reaction with uranium at the University of Chicago, launching the world into the atomic age. Heisenberg returned to Germany. After its surrender in 1945, Goudsmit went there as head of the secret “Alsos Mission” to determine how close Germany had come to building an atomic bomb. At the time I took this photograph, did anyone realize the roles Goudsmit, Fermi, and Heisenberg would play on opposite sides of WWII?” – John Kraus

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