Nuclear physics today is in a unique position among sciences. It stands at the frontier of the unknown; the nuclear physicist, more than any other investigator, is searching for the unexpected. One might expect, as is usual in science, that the applications would come along twenty years behind the fundamental work. But in the case of nuclear fission the exigencies of the war shortened the time between the discovery and its application to six years, and nuclear physics therefore carries the prestige both of the most fundamental of the sciences and of the progenitor of a decisive weapon. We, in this country, have seen how, as a consequence, this research is supported in America by the armed services, and we wonder whether this is because further nuclear research may produce bigger and better weapons, or whether it is merely felt that nuclear physicists turned out to be useful and adaptable men in the last war, and in any future emergency the more the country has of them the better. Whatever the reason, we have the greatest admiration of the energy with which your universities are making the most of your opportunity.

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