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You Can Own an Artifact From the a Manhattan Project for Under $40

The most important science project of all time will look really cool on your coffee table.

Mini Museum
Image by Mini Museum

The Manhattan Project was the United States’ World War II research and development project that produced the world’s first atomic bomb. It is without question one of the most ambitious, historically significant scientific undertakings in the history of mankind. And now, thanks to the folks at Mini Museum, who have obtained incredible specimens of Manhattan Project Shield Windows, you can actually own a piece of it.

The Manhattan Project began in 1939 at a cost of $2 billion. It employed over 130,000 scientists, engineers, technicians, and construction workers at more than 30 sites across the United States, including well-known locations such as Oak Ridge, Los Alamos, Trinity, and Hanford.

Of course, the legacy of the Manhattan Project is simultaneously magnificent and horrifying. On the one hand, the project was an incredible technological achievement by the greatest team of scientists the world had ever seen, and helped end the bloodiest conflic in human history. It ushered in an age of unprecedented mastery of physics and nature and created a huge network of national science labs that pioneered technological breakthroughs for decades. On the other hand, the Manhattan Project also produced the atomic bombs that killed over 200,000 people in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And this newfound ability to inflict unspeakable destruction immediately changed the balance of global power and the course of human history.

Over the last few years, Mini Museum has been giving collectors the opportunity to own priceless scientific and historical artifacts, both as individual pieces as well as in their amazing Mini Museum collections. To date they’ve shipped almost 1,000,000 specimens encompassing more than 150 different subjects, spanning billions of years of natural history, to more than 40,000 customers in 120 different countries. Now Mini Museum is offering collectors the opportunity to purchase one-of-a-kind Manhattan Project Shield Window specimens.

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Manhattan Project Shield Window – FULL WINDOW

Image via Mini Museum

If you’ve got especially deep pockets or, say, some institutional money to spend, you might as well go big with this complete 54-inch Manhattan Project Shield Window. This specimen is a full-size leaded glass shield window, completely intact and in pristine condition, from the Manhattan Project’s Hanford Site. Once installed in the T Plant Plutonium Recovery Building, this window is what engineers would look through while extracting plutonium from irradiated fuel rods. Plutonium produced in the T Plant Plutonium Recovery Building was used for the Trinity test, the first ever detonation of an atomic bomb on July 16, 1945, as well as the “Fat Man” atomic bomb dropped on Nagasaki on August 9, 1945.

This window is one of only a few completely in-tact specimens remaining from the Manhattan Project. It was originally sold by the government in the 1980s as part of the decommissioning of Manhattan Project sites. The yellow color of the glass is due to its 30 percent concentration of lead-oxide, which blocks blue and UV light and gives the glass its protective properties.

Unfortunately, given the rarity of this specimen, as well as its connection to such an important moment in world history, if you want to add the full Manhattan Project Shield Window to your personal collection, it’s going to cost you $3.4 million.

For those who don’t have that kind of budget, Mini Museum also has fragments of Manhattan Project Shield Windows in varying sizes that regular people can actually afford.

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Shield Window Fragment

Image via Mini Museum

The Manhattan Project shield window fragments come from leaded glass windows installed in the T Plant Plutonium Recovery Building, which produced the plutonium for the Trinity test bomb and “fat man” bomb dropped on Nagasaki. These fragments are a lot easier to display than the full window, which weighs in at a whopping 1,700 pounds. They are also considerably more affordable, ranging in price from $39 to $579.

The two smallest shield window fragments are enclosed in acrylic specimen jars, which come in glass-top riker display boxes. Larger fragments come in black display boxes similar to those used for jewelry. All fragments come with a small information card that serves as a certificate of authenticity.

While these shield window fragments are not radioactive, they do contain high amounts of lead-oxide. Thus, they should only be handled while wearing gloves.

This offering from Mini Museum is your chance to own an artifact from one of the most important scientific projects of all time. If you or someone you love is a collector with a particular interest in science and history, don’t wait around to get your hands on it, because supplies are extremely limited. Click here to order your Manhattan Project Shield Window Fragment, today.

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