Weber, J. (Joseph), 1919-2000

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Joseph Weber (1919-2000).

From the description of Oral history interview with Joseph Weber, 1983 April 8. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 81003959

Joseph Weber was born in Paterson, N. J. in 1919. After working on radar technology in the Navy during World War II, he joined the University of Maryland as a professor of electrical engineering in 1948. He was the first scientist to work out the theoretical concept of a maser (a proto-laser), though he did not build one. He later became a professor of physics as well. Starting in 1955, he attempted to detect gravitational waves. The existence of gravitational waves is predicted by the general theory of relativity. Weber designed an aluminum alloy bar, surrounded by piezoelectric quartz crystals to detect the nearly imperceptible waves' vibrations. After several modifications, he designed two such detectors, one on the Maryland campus and another at Argonne National Laboratory in Chicago. In 1968, he and his team claimed to detect wave vibrations. Weber's results have been examined and disputed by many physicists. In 1972, after the death of Weber's first wife, Weber married University of California, Irvine astronomer Virginia Trimble. Thereafter, Weber spent half of the academic year at Maryland and half at Irvine. Weber continued to check up on his detector at Maryland until his death in 2000.

From the description of Papers of Joseph Weber, 1930-2000. (University of Maryland Libraries). WorldCat record id: 82957587

Joseph Weber, 1919-2000.

From the description of Response to Laser History Project Survey, ca. 1986. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 77594634

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn John Archibald Wheeler Papers, 1880-2008, 1880-2008 American Philosophical Society
referencedIn Wilkinson, David T. Oral history interview with David Todd Wilkinson, 1984 September 27. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Joseph Weber papers, 1930-2000, null University of Maryland (College Park, Md.). Libraries
creatorOf Weber, J. (Joseph), 1919-2000. Response to Laser History Project Survey, ca. 1986. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Wheeler, John Archibald, 1911-2008. Papers, [ca. 1950s-1970s]. American Philosophical Society Library
creatorOf Weber, J. (Joseph), 1919-2000. Oral history interview with Joseph Weber, 1983 April 8. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Bell Telephone Laboratories, inc. corporateBody
correspondedWith Benford, Gregory, 1941- person
associatedWith Bromberg, Joan Lisa. person
associatedWith Catholic University of America. corporateBody
associatedWith Institute of Radio Engineers. corporateBody
associatedWith Piore, Emanuel Ruben, 1908-2000. person
correspondedWith Trimble, Virginia person
correspondedWith Tyson, J. Anthony person
associatedWith United States. Navy Department. Bureau of Ships. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Office of Naval Research. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Maryland. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Maryland (College Park, Md.) corporateBody
associatedWith Wheeler, John Archibald, 1911-2008. person
associatedWith Wilkinson, David T. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Maryland--College Park
Gravitational waves


Birth 1919-05-17

Death 2000-09-30




Ark ID: w6bz68f0

SNAC ID: 23640131