Oral history of British science

Forrest, Michael (Part 7 of 14). An Oral History of British Science.

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  • Recording locations

    Interviewee's home, Abingdon

  • Interviewees

    Forrest, Michael, 1934- (speaker, male)

  • Interviewers

    Lean, Thomas (speaker, male)

  • Abstract

    Part 7: Remarks on: glass cow's horn used to dump laser light, made by glass-blowers; long process to test laser with plasma; electronics noise; eventual success of system; spectral channels; publishing results to enthusiastic reception; [04:40] importance of technique in measuring fusion temperature; publicity in 'New Scientist' and 'Nature'. [06:10] Further comments on failure of ZETA: gradual realisation that it hadn't worked; independent assessment; reactions in Harwell; MF surprise that Cockcroft and other senior scientists accepted it's success so easily; later realisation that ZETA had a quiescent and quiet period of fusion containment, similar to Tokamak; testing of laser scattering on thetatron and other plasma sources. [10:15] Remarks on origins on Russian visit: declassification of Russian tokamak results, disbelieved by Americans; Russian scientist [Lev] Artsimovitch inviting Culham group to Moscow; lecture at Harwell by Igor Kurchartov. [12:30] Remarks on: security, Culham Hanger 7 and ZETA classification, not asking other people about work; learning about Russian tokamak results and later decision to send MF and team to Russia.

  • Description

    Life story interview with physicist Dr Michael Forrest.

  • Related transcripts

    Dr Michael Forrest interviewed by Thomas Lean: full transcript of the interview

  • Related links

    Visit this interviewee's page on the 'Voices of Science' web resource

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