The Accidents on the Manhattan Project

February 19, 2021 6:44 am


Working in a laboratory is very different to most workplaces. Because of the nature of the work there are lots of rules that must be followed strictly when working in a lab and even things like moving the laboratory is something that should be handled by skilled professionals who specialise in lab relocation services such as


Over the years, laboratory safety rules have often come about sadly from accidents which have occurred that have shown the need for the rigorous rules to be put into place. One of the most famous accidents in a laboratory happened during one of the most ambitious projects that has ever taken place – the Manhattan project.

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This project was the hunt for a nuclear weapon – led by Robert Oppenheimer, many top scientists came to work at the secret laboratory in Los Alamos. It was here that the first ever nuclear weapon was created – but where two scientists lost their lives in laboratory accidents.

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Harry Daghlian and Louis Slotin were the two scientists who lost their lives whilst performing these dangerous experiments known as tickling the tail of the dragon. The experiments were to work out critical mass but sadly both of them on two separate occasions were exposed to huge amounts of radiation caused by accidents in the laboratories – they both sadly died within a month of the exposure.

From these accidents, many new safety measures came into place to ensure that people who worked on these experiments were not put at so much risk.