Thursday, August 09, 2018

Rickover and the Nuclear Navy: The Discipline of Technology -

The Oak Ridge experience left Rickover a legacy of keen distrust of scientists, an attitude that marked all his future undertakings. He was not opposed to science or to scientists, but scientific truth was not engineering truth, nor was the mission of the scientist the same as the task of the engineer. The scientist in his quest had to exercise strict discipline to exclude human bias, preconception, and prejudice; the engineer in his job had to take these frailties into account, for his machines and devices would be operated by and in the midst of humans with all of their shortcomings. Both approaches were essential, but for practical application of nuclear technology the principles of engineering had to govern.