As a twelve year old boy, Peter Lax took an interest in mathematics. In high school, he was even able to compete on his school’s math team. It was during this time in his life that he was introduced to Albert Einstein. When he turned 17, he finished high school and immediately began studying at NYU. Early on his college career while taking a complex analysis course at NYU, he took over the class and became the professor.
It wasn’t long before he was drafted into the U.S. Army. It was during his service that he was sent to Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and later on to Los Alamos, NM to work on the Manhattan Project.
Peter started out as a calculator operator, but quickly moved on to more difficult mathematic work in the Theoretical Physics Division as well as work on neutron transport, fluid dynamics, and shockwaves.
Watch his interview with Atomic Heritage from 2006, where he tells us about his life and his time with the Manhattan Project himself!