I was pleased to read Ted Rockwell ’43 *45’s letter (June 1). I followed Ted at the Division of Naval Reactors, along with several engineering classmates.
I took personal offense at Professor Frank von Hippel’s tossing off submarine reactors as having been designed with “safety as an add-on” (A Moment With, April 27). I can assure you that everyone involved in the design and operation of the Navy’s reactors viewed safety as the most important objective, every hour of every day. This culture was part of the program from the very beginning.
In fact, Ted Rockwell, who was one of a small handful of very smart, very devoted individuals responsible for getting the Navy’s nuclear program started, gets a lot of credit for this culture of safety first, and ultimately for the safety record of Navy and civilian reactors he cites in his letter.