Having grown up in the Atomic City of Oak Ridge, Tennessee I was a very frequent visitor to the original American Museum of Atomic Energy and remember when the new building was built for it in the early 1970s.
I have been to visit numerous times since it became the American Museum of Science and Energy (AMSE). I have very strong feelings about the museum being downsized by 70 percent and moved to a less visible location. With no family left in Oak RIdge I get back at least once a year, usually for the Secret City Festival and on June 3, 2017 I visited again and decided to document what we have that seems to be lost. 70 percent of what you see here is going away.
In a very quick turn around, the property the museum is on was owned by the Department of Energy and because the redeveloper of the old Oak Ridge Mall was concerned the property could be developed for competing retail the developer wanted control of the property. The DOE transferred the property to the City of Oak Ridge and the city made arrangements to transfer the property to the developer in exchange for the developer providing a much smaller location for the museum.
If you want to see this historic museum before these devastating changes I would encourage you to visit this year. All Photos Copyright 2017 Jim Young.
Flag and 9-11 memorial representing the
Twin Towers of the World Trade Center
American Museum of Science and Energy (AMSE) building
AMSE Entrance and 9-11 memorial
Model of an atom outside the AMSE.
AMSE from the parking lot
AMSE sign with the building behind
Sign and AMSE building
Solar panels added to the museum in later years.
Model of one of the gaseous diffusion tanks from K-25
Main room of AMSE showing a display of Ed Westcott photos
AMSE main room from 2nd floor
Visitors enjoy exhibits
Helpful staff and volunteers and entrance to Oak Ridge
AMSE Main floor
Model of guard tower
Panorama shot of main floor at AMSE
Painting of Oak Ridge Photographer Ed Westcott
Window to the Univers
Model of the X-10 Graphite Reactor
Info on Y-12
Model of the Oak Ridge Research Reactor
(also known as the Swimming Pool Reactor)
Info on K-25 (gaseous diffusion plant)
Exhibit for K-25
Model of the valley showing plant locations
The AMSE auditorium is used for demonstrations
and many community programs.
Starting a program on the Van De Graaff generator
a classic program done since the museum opened
It is hair raising fun!
Kids get a real charge out of it.
Light a fluorescent tube without wires.
Perhaps this will spark a child's interest in science?
The AMSE has a wide variety of fun science exhibits
Moving model of an atom
Learn about electricity
Classic Jacob's ladder
You can even get inside a kaleidoscope.
Can you make them work?
Fun for all ages.
An original Oak Ridge house from 1940's
The original tiny house!
How those in Oak Ridge lived during the war
Not a lot of space.
A compact kitchen.
Y-12 Calutron controls
Early pin badge dosimeter.
License plate with Atomic City souvenir cap
Model of the Little Boy bomb that used U235
separated at Oak Ridge
Oak Ridge history exhibits
Model of Liquid Metal cooled reactor
Security portal mock up
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