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Edward Teller

Data de nascimento: 15. Janeiro 1908
Data de falecimento: 9. Setembro 2003

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Edward Teller foi um físico teórico americano de origem húngara que, embora tenha alegado que não se importava com o título, é conhecido popularmente como "o pai da bomba de hidrogênio". Fez inúmeras contribuições para a física nuclear e molecular, espectroscopia e a física de superfície. Sua extensão da teoria de decaimento beta de Enrico Fermi, sob a forma das chamadas transições Gamow-Teller, forneceram um passo importante na sua aplicação, enquanto o efeito Jahn-Teller e a teoria Brunauer-Emmett-Teller têm mantido a sua formulação original e ainda são pilares da física e da química. Também fez contribuições à teoria de Thomas-Fermi, o precursor da teoria do funcional da densidade, uma ferramenta moderna padrão no tratamento da mecânica quântica de moléculas complexas. Em 1953, juntamente com Nicholas Metropolis e Marshall Rosenbluth, Teller foi co-autor de um artigo que é um ponto de partida padrão para as aplicações do Método de Monte Carlo na mecânica estatística.

Teller imigrou para os Estados Unidos na década de 1930, e foi um dos primeiros membros do Projeto Manhattan encarregado de desenvolver as primeiras bombas atômicas. Durante este tempo, ele fez um esforço sério para desenvolver as primeiras armas baseadas em fusão, bem como, mas estes foram adiados até depois da Segunda Guerra Mundial. Após seu depoimento controverso na audiência de habilitação de segurança do seu ex-colega de Los Alamos Robert Oppenheimer, Teller foi condenado ao ostracismo por grande parte da comunidade científica. Ele continuou a receber apoio do governo dos Estados Unidos e estabelecimento de pesquisa militar, particularmente por sua defesa para o desenvolvimento de energia nuclear, um arsenal nuclear forte, e um vigoroso programa de testes nucleares. Foi co-fundador do Laboratório Nacional de Lawrence Livermore , e foi ao mesmo tempo o seu diretor titular e diretor associado por muitos anos.

Em seus últimos anos, Teller tornou-se especialmente conhecido por sua defesa de soluções tecnológicas controversas para ambos os problemas militares e civis, incluindo um plano para escavar um porto artificial no Alasca utilizando explosivos termonucleares no que foi chamado Projeto Chariot. Ele era um defensor vigoroso da Iniciativa Estratégica de Defesa de Reagan. Ao longo de sua vida, era conhecido tanto por sua capacidade científica e suas relações interpessoais difíceis e personalidade volátil, e é considerado uma das inspirações para o personagem Dr. Strangelove no filme de mesmo nome de 1964.

Citações Edward Teller

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„I don't want to kill anybody. I am passionately opposed to killing, but I'm even more passionately fond of freedom.“

— Edward Teller
Context: I don't want to kill anybody. I am passionately opposed to killing, but I'm even more passionately fond of freedom. The freedom of Dr. Pauling and of myself expressing our opinions freely on any subject, however broad, however far removed of our proper competence, but particularly, to be able to express our opinions in the fields we really know; this would not be possible in Russia. Debating Linus Pauling, in [http://osulibrary.oregonstate.edu/specialcollections/coll/pauling/peace/papers/1958p2.1.html The Nuclear Bomb Tests...Is Fallout Overrated? : Fallout and Disarmament KQED-TV, San Francisco (20 February 1958)]

„The idea of God that I absorbed was that it would be wonderful if He existed: We needed Him desperately but had not seen Him in many thousands of years.“

— Edward Teller
Context: Religion was not an issue in my family; indeed, it was never discussed. My only religious training came because the Minta required that all students take classes in their respective religions. My family celebrated one holiday, the Day of Atonement, when we all fasted. Yet my father said prayers for his parents on Saturdays and on all the Jewish holidays. The idea of God that I absorbed was that it would be wonderful if He existed: We needed Him desperately but had not seen Him in many thousands of years. Memoirs: A Twentieth Century Journey In Science And Politics., (2002) by Edward Teller, Basic Books, p. 32.

„I believe in evil. It is the property of all those who are certain of truth.“

— Edward Teller
Context: I believe in evil. It is the property of all those who are certain of truth. Despair and fanaticism are only differing manifestations of evil. As quoted in The Martians of Science : Five Physicists Who Changed the Twentieth Century (2006) by István Hargittai, p. 251

„The preservation of peace and the improvement of the lot of all people require us to have faith in the rationality of humans.“

— Edward Teller
Context: The preservation of peace and the improvement of the lot of all people require us to have faith in the rationality of humans. If we have this faith and if we pursue understanding, we have not the promise but at least the possibility of success. We should not be misled by promises. Humanity in all its history has repeatedly escaped disaster by a hair's breadth. Total security has never been available to anyone. To expect it is unrealistic; to imagine that it can exist is to invite disaster. What we do have in our technological capacities is an opportunity to use our inventiveness, our creativity, our wisdom and our understanding of our fellow beings to create a future world that is a little better than the one in which we live today. The Pursuit of Simplicity (1981), p. 151 Variant: Total security has never been available to anyone. To expect it is unrealistic; to imagine that it can exist is to invite disaster. I believe the most important aim for humanity at present is to avoid war, dictatorship, and their awful consequences. Better a Shield Than A Sword : Perspectives On Defense And Technology (1987), p. 241

„But when the temperature does rise by a few degrees over the whole globe, there is a possibility that the icecaps will start melting and the level of the oceans will begin to rise.“

— Edward Teller
Context: At present the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has risen by 2 per cent over normal. By 1970, it will be perhaps 4 per cent, by 1980, 8 per cent, by 1990, 16 per cent [about 360 parts per million, by Teller’s accounting], if we keep on with our exponential rise in the use of purely conventional fuels. By that time, there will be a serious additional impediment for the radiation leaving the earth. Our planet will get a little warmer. It is hard to say whether it will be 2 degrees Fahrenheit or only one or 5. But when the temperature does rise by a few degrees over the whole globe, there is a possibility that the icecaps will start melting and the level of the oceans will begin to rise. Well, I don’t know whether they will cover the Empire State Building or not, but anyone can calculate it by looking at the map and noting that the icecaps over Greenland and over Antarctica are perhaps five thousand feet thick. As quoted in Benjamin Franta, [https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2018/jan/01/on-its-hundredth-birthday-in-1959-edward-teller-warned-the-oil-industry-about-global-warming "On its 100th birthday in 1959, Edward Teller warned the oil industry about global warming"], ', 1 January 2018.

„Total security has never been available to anyone. To expect it is unrealistic; to imagine that it can exist is to invite disaster.“

— Edward Teller
Context: The preservation of peace and the improvement of the lot of all people require us to have faith in the rationality of humans. If we have this faith and if we pursue understanding, we have not the promise but at least the possibility of success. We should not be misled by promises. Humanity in all its history has repeatedly escaped disaster by a hair's breadth. Total security has never been available to anyone. To expect it is unrealistic; to imagine that it can exist is to invite disaster. What we do have in our technological capacities is an opportunity to use our inventiveness, our creativity, our wisdom and our understanding of our fellow beings to create a future world that is a little better than the one in which we live today. The Pursuit of Simplicity (1981), p. 151 Variant: Total security has never been available to anyone. To expect it is unrealistic; to imagine that it can exist is to invite disaster. I believe the most important aim for humanity at present is to avoid war, dictatorship, and their awful consequences. Better a Shield Than A Sword : Perspectives On Defense And Technology (1987), p. 241

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„All of us can be excellent, because, fortunately, we are exceedingly diverse in our ambitions and talents.“

— Edward Teller
Context: I believe in excellence. It is a basic need of every human soul. All of us can be excellent, because, fortunately, we are exceedingly diverse in our ambitions and talents. As quoted in The Martians of Science : Five Physicists Who Changed the Twentieth Century (2006) by István Hargittai, p. 251

„Among the people who knew a great deal about the hydrogen bomb, I was the only advocate of it. And that is, I think, my contribution.“

— Edward Teller
Context: At the end of the war, most people wanted to stop. I didn't. Because here was more knowledge. And in the coming uncertain period, with a dangerous man like Stalin around, and our incomplete knowledge, I felt that more knowledge is necessary. Among the people who knew a great deal about the hydrogen bomb, I was the only advocate of it. And that is, I think, my contribution. Not that I invented it, others would have — and others in the Soviet Union did. But I was the one person who put knowledge, and the availability of knowledge, above everything else. On the creation of the hydrogen bomb, in Trinity and Beyond: The Atomic Bomb Movie

„I do not think that this peace based on force is, can be, or should be, an ultimate end.“

— Edward Teller
Context: If we stay strong, then I believe we can stabilize the world and have peace based on force. Now, peace based on force is not as good as peace based on agreement, but in the terrible world in which we live, in the world where the Russians have enslaved many millions of human beings, in the world where they have killed men, I think that for the time being the only peace we can have is the peace based on force. Furthermore, I do not think that this peace based on force is, can be, or should be, an ultimate end. Our ultimate end must be precisely what Dr. Pauling says, peace based on agreement, on understanding, on universally agreed and enforced law. I think this is a wonderful idea, but peace based on force buys the necessary time, and in this time we can work for better understanding, for closer collaboration, first with the countries which are closest to us, which we understand better, our allies, the western countries, the NATO countries, which believe in human liberties as we do. Then, as soon as possible, with the rest of the free world, and eventually, I hope, with the whole world, including Russia, even though it may take many years to come. Debating Linus Pauling, in [http://osulibrary.oregonstate.edu/specialcollections/coll/pauling/peace/papers/1958p2.1.html The Nuclear Bomb Tests...Is Fallout Overrated? : Fallout and Disarmament KQED-TV, San Francisco (20 February 1958)]

„By having simplified what is known, physicists have been led into realms which as yet are anything but simple.“

— Edward Teller
Context: By having simplified what is known, physicists have been led into realms which as yet are anything but simple. That at some time, they, too, will appear as simple consequences of a theory of which no one has yet dreamed is not a statement of fact. It is a statement of faith. The Pursuit of Simplicity (1981), p. 72

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„If we stay strong, then I believe we can stabilize the world and have peace based on force.“

— Edward Teller
Context: If we stay strong, then I believe we can stabilize the world and have peace based on force. Now, peace based on force is not as good as peace based on agreement, but in the terrible world in which we live, in the world where the Russians have enslaved many millions of human beings, in the world where they have killed men, I think that for the time being the only peace we can have is the peace based on force. Furthermore, I do not think that this peace based on force is, can be, or should be, an ultimate end. Our ultimate end must be precisely what Dr. Pauling says, peace based on agreement, on understanding, on universally agreed and enforced law. I think this is a wonderful idea, but peace based on force buys the necessary time, and in this time we can work for better understanding, for closer collaboration, first with the countries which are closest to us, which we understand better, our allies, the western countries, the NATO countries, which believe in human liberties as we do. Then, as soon as possible, with the rest of the free world, and eventually, I hope, with the whole world, including Russia, even though it may take many years to come. Debating Linus Pauling, in [http://osulibrary.oregonstate.edu/specialcollections/coll/pauling/peace/papers/1958p2.1.html The Nuclear Bomb Tests...Is Fallout Overrated? : Fallout and Disarmament KQED-TV, San Francisco (20 February 1958)]

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