Atomic Bomb Developer Donates to KU

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP)- The estate of a University of Kansas graduate who helped develop the atomic bomb has donated $1.8 million to establish a new professorship in physics.

The KU Endowment announced Wednesday that the gift comes from Ernest Klema and his late wife Virginia Klema, who also was a scientist. He died in 2008, and she died in 2015.

Ernest Klema earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the university in the early 1940s before beginning work on his doctorate at Princeton University. Ultimately, his project was transferred to Los Alamos in New Mexico, where he worked on the Manhattan project to develop the atomic bomb.

He later worked at several universities and labs before becoming a professor and dean of engineering at Tufts University.

Associated Press information from: Lawrence Journal-World