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Andrei Sakharov - web exhibit from the American Institute of Physics History Center

Andrei Sakharov: Soviet Physics, Nuclear Weapons, and Human Rights



Andrei Sakharov (1921-1989) was a Soviet physicist who became, in the words of the Nobel Peace Committee, a spokesman for the conscience of mankind. He was fascinated by fundamental physics and cosmology, but he had to spent two decades designing nuclear weapons. The acknowledged father of the Soviet hydrogen bomb, he contributed perhaps more than anyone else to the military might of the USSR. But it was his top secret experience as a leading nuclear expert that was instrumental in making Sakharov one of the most courageous critics of the Soviet regime, a human rights activist and the first Russian to win the Nobel Peace Prize. He helped bring down one of history’s most powerful dictatorships. This exhibit tells about Sakharov’s extraordinary life.

This exhibit is brought to you by the Center for History of Physics 
Center for History of Physics 

a division of the 
American Institute of Physics  
American Institute of Physics 

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The Early Years (1921-1944)From Graduate Studies to  Bomb Design (1945-1950)The Hydrogen Bomb (1950-1956)

Nuclear Testing and Conscience (1957-1963)Quantum Cosmology and Social Responsibility (1964-1968)Reflections on Progress, Peaceful Coexistance and Intellectual Freedom

Human Rights Movement (1969-1979)Exile in Gorky (1980-1989)Perestroika and Struggle for Democracy (1987-1989)Sakharov on His Intrellectual Evolution

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American Institute of Physics and Gennady Gorelik