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Ames process

  The Ames process is a process by which pure uranium metal is obtained. It can be achieved by mixing any of the uranium halides (commonly uranium tetrafluoride) with calcium metal powder or aluminum metal powder.


The Ames process was invented on August 3, 1942 by a group of chemists led by Frank Spedding at the Ames Laboratory. It came in a time of increased research into mass uranium metal production. The increased production was caused by a fear of Nazi Germany discovering nuclear fission before the Allies. The process was originally designed by mixing powdered uranium tetrafluoride and powdered calcium. This mixture was placed in an iron pipe that was welded shut on one side and capped shut on another side. This container, called a "bomb" by Spedding, was placed in a blast furnace. The container, when heated to 1500°C, exploded in the furnace, leaving a 35-gram ingot of pure uranium metal.


This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Ames_process". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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