The Student Room Group

Nuclear science

I am an author and I am planning a novel that deals with the trials and tribulations of a passivist Polish scientist who was abducted in Ww2 to work for the Germans on their nuclear program. At the start of the war their plan was to use heavy water to moderate their uranium. But British and Norwegian saboteurs destroyed the factory in the mountains of Norway and sunk a boat taking stocks of heavy water to Germany (Heroes of Telemark film!). My fictional scientist is an expert in alternative methods of moderating uranium hence his abduction. I am aware that there are other means of moderating such as using graphite but I cannot home in on precisely how this might be used and added to my story.
Question 1. I believe the heavy water option uses a series of centrifuges to improve the 235/238 proportions. Does the graphite alternative use centrifuges?
Question 2. Presumably the successfully moderated uranium is produced by a process prior to the construction and delivery of the bomb? Ie moderation is not happening during the explosion.
It would be ideal for my story line if my scientist was an expert in some part of the construction and delivery of the bomb! Yes you guessed it, he stops it at the final moment.
Any ideas? Clearly this is not for scientists. So I will only need a broad brush description.
Any help and guidance would be hugely appreciated.
I'm far from an expert at nuclear energy, as in as far as you can possibly get, but I know that there is nuclear fission and nuclear fusion.

Nuclear fusion is rarely used as it requires such obscene amounts of energy to heat up, but perhaps your scientist could find a way around this? However, you should definitely research more into anything you decide to do as it could be possible it's completely historically

Good luck! :smile:

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