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Ideas for space development


The importance of the Strategic Defense Initiative
Edward Teller Scientist
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Actually, the Strategic Defense Initiative, for instance in the form developed by Lowell Wood and others with him, is extremely important. Not only, appears it to- appears it to- appears to be- I'm sorry. Not only did it frighten the Soviets in a way that may have contributed to the end of the Communist regime in Russia, it also answers the obvious problems that arise in connection with space developments. If space can be only used to attack anybody on earth at any distance, that of course is a source of extreme instability. I believe to get rid of it we should not forbid space development. We should introduce space development for positive purposes.

The late Hungarian-American physicist Edward Teller helped to develop the atomic bomb and provided the theoretical framework for the hydrogen bomb. During his long and sometimes controversial career he was a staunch advocate of nuclear power and also of a strong defence policy, calling for the development of advanced thermonuclear weapons.

Listeners: John H. Nuckolls

John H. Nuckolls was Director of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory from 1988 to 1994. He joined the Laboratory in 1955, 3 years after its establishment, with a masters degree in physics from Columbia. He rose to become the Laboratory's Associate Director for Physics before his appointment as Director in 1988.

Nuckolls, a laser fusion and nuclear weapons physicist, helped pioneer the use of computers to understand and simulate physics phenomena at extremes of temperature, density and short time scales. He is internationally recognised for his work in the development and control of nuclear explosions and as a pioneer in the development of laser fusion.

Duration: 1 minute, 44 seconds

Date story recorded: June 1996

Date story went live: 29 September 2010