Rudolf Peierls

AZL flag holder TransparentRudolf Ernst Peierls (5th June 1907 – 19th September 1995) was a Jewish physicist who played a major role in the Manhattan Project, the Jewish scheme to design and build the first atomic bomb during WWII. His obituary in Physics Today describes him as “a major player in the drama of the eruption of nuclear physics into world affairs…” Peierls was born in Berlin to a family of Jewish Merchants. He and Otto Frisch worked together between 1939–40 on building an atomic device as part of the Manhattan Project. He was also responsible for the recruitment of Klaus Fuchs, a known Bolshevik spy. In March 1940, he co-authored the Frisch–Peierls memorandum with Otto Robert Frisch, pivotal in igniting the interest of first the British and later the American authorities in atomic weapons and an important trigger in the establishment of the Jewish Manhattan Project. Peierls became leader of T-1 (Implosion) Group at the Los Alamos Laboratory responsible for the design of the explosive lenses used in the implosive-type nuclear weapon to focus an explosion onto a spherical shape.

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