by Yuri SIVINTSEV, Dr. Sc. (Phys. & Math.), National Research Center "Kurchatov Institute" (Moscow)
The fate draw us together with Kurchatov in 1948. That short period of time till his death in 1960 left a mark on my attitude to life. I still remember his intent and close look, strong handshake, entirely irresistible smile and, as one would say now, aura of a fervent and successful man. Thinking today about Kurchatov's life, I believe that this image was, to some extent, a mask at that time-after all, an atomic bomb, creation of which attracted practically all efforts (we used to say at that time that should pigeon's milk be needed in the evening, a whole tank of such milk would be delivered next morning), was not set off yet... It is no mere chance that the recollections of the head of the USSR State Committee for Use of Atomic Energy, corresponding member of the USSR Academy of Sciences Vasily Yemelyanov published in the Yunost journal in due time included a confession, which is clear today--after the bomb was set off Kurchatov burst into tears...
Kurchatov in the environs near Moscow. The first half of the 1950s.
That was a torrid summer in the distant year 1948, or very long ago. On graduation from the physics department of the Moscow State University I received an appointment to Laboratory No. 2 of the USSR Academy of Sciences. I had detailed instructions of how to get there: to go by subway to the last station (it was "Sokol" at that time) and then by tram to the Pokrovskoye-Streshnevo stop. From there I had to go along a path through the forest and ravine to dwelling houses, find a bath house (!) and pull a doorbell. Not without adventures and questions to a few passers-by I got to that door and pulled the bell. A staff member of the personnel department came out, took my job assignment, handed over an application form on 16 pages (in two copies) and warned that no corrections were admissible in that form. Not a single ... Читать далее