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National Museum of Nuclear Science & History

John William Healy (1920-2001) worked in the field of radiation safety at Hanford during the Manhattan Project and at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Born in Corry, Pennsylvania, Healy graduated with a degree in chemical engineering from Pennsylvania State College in 1942. He started working for DuPont in Buffalo, New York, where he was tasked with spinning and testing new fibers for the Pioneering Research Group, Rayon Division.

In the fall of 1944, Healy moved to Hanford, Washington, to work in radiation protection. He was quickly assigned to the Special Studies Group, which was responsible for creating new means of radiation measurement and environmental monitoring. He was involved in studies to determine the environmental impact of reactor operations at the Hanford site. He recognized the dangers and consequences of dumping materials and the possibilities of air pollution from the iodine volatilization. However, he believed that DuPont was a safety-conscious company in terms of reactor operation.

Healy remained at Hanford when General Electric took over operations in 1946. From 1960 to 1968, he worked as a technological hazards consultant for General Electric in New York, and from 1968 to 1985 he worked as a staff member in radiation hazards work at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

For more information on the environmental studies at Hanford, see Healy’s oral history with the U.S. Department of Energy.

John W. Healy's Timeline
1920 May 9th Born in Corry, Pennsylvania.
1942 Received degree in Chemical Engineering from Pennsylvania State College
19441960 Worked at Hanford in radiation protection.
19601968 Worked as a technological hazards consultant for General Electric in New York.
19681985 Worked as a staff member in radiation hazards work at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

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