ARGONNE NATIONAL LABORATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ARGONNE NATIONAL LABORATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Portrait of Leona Woods, US physicist & member of the team led by Enrico Fermi that built the first atomic pile. Woods built & monitored some of the instruments that measured conditions inside the core of the pile. The pile was built in a squash court at the University of Chicago in 1942. At 3.36 pm on 2 December 1942, the pile registered the first self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction - the dawn of the atomic age. This photograph was taken in Chicago in 1942. Leona Woods married John Marshall, who also worked on the atomic pile, and later Willard Libby, the American chemist and Nobel prize winner.
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