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National Museum of Nuclear Science & History

Bob Carter is an American physicist who worked on the Water Boiler Reactor at Los Alamos during the Manhattan Project.

Carter was recruited to work on the Manhattan Project as a graduate student at Purdue University, where he conducted physics research using the university’s cyclotron alongside Harry Daghlian. In 1943, Carter and Daghlian were transferred to Los Alamos, where they were assigned to create an operating nuclear reactor that ran on enriched uranium.

Carter worked alongside Joan Hinton, one of the few women who worked on the Manhattan Project. Carter and Hinton persuaded project director J. Robert Oppenheimer to let them stay in his log cabin in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains for a short vacation during the Project.

Carter also witnessed the Trinity Test (unofficially), riding his motorcycle to a hidden spot near the Trinity Site with Joan Hinton and several other project members. He also had several interactions with spies Klaus Fuchs and Ted Hall.

Robert Carter's Timeline
1920 Feb 3rd Born in Philadelphia, PA.
1942 Received B.S. in Physics from Washington College.
19421943 Electronics instructor at Purdue University.
1943 Dec1945 Joined the Water Boiler Group at Los Alamos.

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