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Lawrence, Ernest

Summary Article: Lawrence, Ernest O(rlando) (1901-1958) from The Hutchinson Dictionary of Scientific Biography
US physicist who was responsible for the concept and development of the cyclotron. For this achievement he was awarded the 1939 Nobel Prize for Physics. As director of the Radiation Laboratories at Berkeley, California, he and his co-workers then produced a remarkable sequence of discoveries, which included the creation of radioactive isotopes and the synthesis of new transuranic elements. Lawrence was born in Canton, South Dakota, on 8 August 1901. He went to the University of South Dakota, where he was awarded a BS degree in 1922, and then continued his studies at the University of Minnesota, specializing in physics and gaining an MA the following year. After a further two years spent at the University of Chicago, he went to Yale University where he carried out research on photoelectricity and gained his PhD in 1925. He continued at Yale as a research fellow and later as assistant professor of physics until 1928. During this period he made a precise determination of the ionization...    Continue Reading

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