• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Why was bletchley park able to break the Enigma code?

Extracts from this document...


Matthew Smithies 10M Bletchley Park Question 2 The Enigma Machine was a revolutionary coding device invented buy the Germans in 1919. It operated on a series of rotors and plugs and codes were able to be changed constantly to create over 150 Million Million code possibilities. No conventional code breaking methods would work against the Enigma as, if one code were cracked; another would replace it straight away. The Germans believed it impossible to crack. Bletchley Park was greatly helped to crack the Enigma by the Poles. The Poles needed to crack Enigma to defend themselves against the Germans but constant upgrades prevented them from getting very far. By 1938, The Poles had managed to build their own replica Enigma from instructions obtained from a German cipher worker. They were now able to crack Enigma codes much easier. ...read more.


Technology was another major reason that the Enigma was cracked. The Bombe and Colossus were two such examples of how technology aided Bletchley Parks work. The Bombe had 30 rotors so it could cycle through 10 code settings at once. It could crack a code in hours rather than days and could work 24 hours a day 7 days a week. The Colossus was the first ever programmable computer system. Developed in 1943 by Tommy Flowers, it was an 'upgrade' to the Bombe. Colossus was paramount in breaking the 'Dolphin' cipher and the 'Shark' cipher (a four-rotor cipher). It also broke 'Fish', Hitler's personal code which was coded using the Lorenz code. John Herivel was a Cambridge Maths graduate and code breaker at Bletchley Park. He broke the German Army's 'Red' cipher using his imagination and logic and working out that German code operators were not changing their code setting regularly. ...read more.


All of the above reasons are linked. For example, the Poles and Rejewski are linked with the work if Alan Turing because without their help and ideas, Turing might never have developed the Bombe from Rejewski's original idea. Another link is between Turing and the development of technology at Bletchley Park. Turing 's Bombe opened up possibilities for technology no one had ever thought of, allowing machines like Colossus to be built. John Herivel and German mistakes are also linked because if the Germans had made sure their code settings were changed regularly and they had not become lazy, Herivel would never have been able to guess they were doing so. Bletchley Park was able to break the Enigma because of all these reasons, but I believe the most important reason is the work of the Poles and Rejewski. Without them, Bletchley Park would never have had a replica Enigma or even have been able to think of building a machine such as the Bombe. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE History Projects section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE History Projects essays

  1. Why did the second world war break out?

    When Hitler first came to power Germany was weak and Hitler wouldn't have been able to start a War. The reason the First World War ended was because Germany were so poor. Instead of keeping it this way like they wanted in the Treaty of Versailles, Britain and France allowed

  2. Why was Bletchley Park able to break the German Enigma Codes?

    There were around 150 million, million, million different combinations. The Poles' help was vital and the staff of Bletchley Park worked in collaboration with the three Polish mathematicians, Zygalski, Rozycki and Rejewski who cracked the first Enigma codes. Dilly Knox met the Poles in 1939 when the information was handed over, as he had worked on the Italian Enigma

  1. Why was Consett Steel Works able to become so successful?

    the Redesdale Ironworks over at Shotley Bridge and together they had formed the Derwentside Iron Company. By lucky coincidence both parties had connections with the Northumberland and Durham District Bank - Jonathan Richardson was managing director - and massive loans were secured to develop the steel plant.

  2. Why was Bletchley Park able to break the German Enigma codes

    Later on, a German who was willing to sell information about the Enigma contacted the French intelligence which later passed this information on to the rest of the allies, including the British. This gave them a crucial head start which greatly helped Bletchley Park crack the Enigma codes.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work