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Digital Archive International History Declassified

January 25, 1952

LETTER FROM JOHN D. COCKCROFT TO HOMI J. BHABHA

This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation, Carnegie Corporation

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    John D. Cockcroft, head of the British Atomic Energy Research Establishment, writes to Homi J. Bhabha, Chairman of the Indian Atomic Energy Commission, informing him that the British will not be assisting India with its beryllium experiements since India has already made agreements with the French Atomic Energy project.
    "Letter from John D. Cockcroft to Homi J. Bhabha," January 25, 1952, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, National Archives, Kew, File AB 16/565, Technical co-operation with India, 1947-54. Obtained for NPIHP by Jayita Sarkar. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/117744
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25TH January, 1952.

My dear Bhabha,

I am afraid that owing to an unusual combination of circumstances I have delayed for a very long time in writing to you about co-operation in your reactor programme.

We feel here that since you have made satisfactory arrangements with the French Atomic Energy Project for carrying out exponential experiments with a beryllia moderated reactor, there would be no sense in duplicating these arrangements with ourselves, particularly since we are so heavily engaged at the present time. We would, however, be very much interested to be kept informed about the progress of these experiments and we would be very glad to assist by any advice or assistance you care to ask from time to time.

We are making arrangements to have a post graduate course on reactor technology in Britain probably at Imperial College. We should therefore be very glad to have any members of your staff who would like to attend such a course.

In the long term you are probably interested in the use of your thorium supplies in the power programme. This however cannot develop until such time as breeding reactors have come into operation.

We are at the present time beginning experimental work on such breeding reactors but we think that it will be three to four years before we have adequate experience to advise you on this question. We will however keep you informed about our programme.

Yours Sincerely,

Sgd. J.D. Cockcroft.