Making ‘The Blue Flash’: How I reconstructed a fatal atomic accident

In 1946, Louis Slotin, a nuclear physicist working on the Manhattan Project, lost his life in a tragic accident. Ben Platts-Mills recounts the story in a specially illustrated feature for BBC Future. Using reconstructions, photographs, and his own mock-up of the apparatus, Platts-Mills created illustrations that capture the events leading up to the accident. He aimed to strike a balance between scientific accuracy and clear storytelling. To achieve this, he posed with household items and built his own critical assembly. The result is a series of unique images that bring the story to life and offer a new perspective on the accident.

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