Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Radiation Laboratory

Variant names

Hide Profile

  • Division 1: Business
  • Division 2: Buildings and Maintenance
  • Division 3: Personnel and Shops
  • Division 4: Research
  • Division 5: Transmitter Components
  • Division 6: Receiver Components
  • Division 7: Beacons
  • Division 8: Fire Control and Army Ground Forces
  • Division 9: Airborne Systems
  • Division 10: Ground and Ship
  • Division 11: Navigation
  • Division 12: Field Service

Radar, an acronym for radio detection and ranging, was patented by British scientist Sir Robert Watson Watt for meteorological applications in 1935. Since practical applications for airborne microwave radar had not been developed before World War II, the government of Great Britain requested assistance from the United States to develop this capability. Britain's secret Tizard mission was dispatched to Washington, DC, in September 1940 to introduce the 10 centimeter cavity magnetron. Beginning in late 1940 and continuing through World War II, large-scale research at the Radiation Laboratory, which operated as part of Division 14, Radar, of the National Defense Research Committee (NDRC) and was sited at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was devoted to the rapid development of microwave radar.

The "Rad Lab" designed almost half of the radar deployed in World War II, created over 100 different radar systems, and constructed radar systems on several continents. Physicist Lee DuBridge directed the Radiation Laboratory. From a staff of 30 physicists the lab grew to comprise almost 3,900 research and support staff by late 1945. The Radiation Laboratory was officially terminated on December 31, 1945, but the NDRC set aside funds for a Basic Research Division to continue from January 1 to June 30, 1946, under the direction of MIT professor Julius A. Stratton, and it was known as the NDRC Research Laboratory of Electronics. Beginning July 1, 1946, the laboratory continued operations as the MIT Research Laboratory of Electronics.

From the guide to the Collection of Papers and Records of the Radiation Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1941-1991, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Institute Archives and Special Collections)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn DuBridge, Lee A. (Lee Alvin), 1901-1994. Oral history interview with Lee A. DuBridge, 1986 February 14. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Papers, 1890-1997 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Beams, Jesse W. (Jesse Wakefield), 1898-1977. Selected correspondence, 1945-1949. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn C. Truesdell Papers, 86-31; 89-4., 1921-1989 Archives of American Mathematics, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin
referencedIn Purcell, Edward M. Radar and physics [videorecording] : a lecture by Edward M. Purcell recorded at Harvard University. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Purcell, Edward M. Oral history interview with Edward Mills Purcell, 1977 June 8 and 14. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn James, Hubert Maxwell, 1908-1986. Response to early 1930s Ph.D.s Survey, 1980. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Trump, John George, 1907-1985. Oral history interview with John George Trump, 1982 June 25. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Louis N. Ridenour Papers, 1917-1960, (bulk 1945-1959) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Pound, Robert Vivian, 1919-. Oral History interview with Robert V. Pound, 2003. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Eastham, Melville, 1885-1964. Melville Eastham papers, 1908-1973 (bulk 1930-1964). Library of Congress
referencedIn Maurer, Robert Joseph, 1913-. Oral history interview with Robert Joseph Maurer, 1981 March 10 to 16. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Dicke, Robert H. (Robert Henry). Oral history interview with Robert Henry Dicke, 1983 May 2. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Stanford University, W.W. Hansen Laboratories, klystron reports and patents, 1936-1949 Stanford University. Department of Special Collections and University Archives
referencedIn Van Atta, Lester C. (Lester Clare), 1905-. Biography, ca. 1972. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Bainbridge, Kenneth T. (Kenneth Tompkins), 1904-1996. Papers of Kenneth Tompkins Bainbridge, 1873, 1923-1996. Harvard University, Archives
referencedIn Mayall, N. U. (Nicholas Ulrich), 1906-1993. Oral history interview with Nicholas Mayall, 1976 June 3. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn DuBridge, Lee A. (Lee Alvin), 1901-1994. Radiation Laboratory Reunion [sound recording] / 1976 November. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Bush, Vannevar, 1890-1974. Oral history interview with Vannevar Bush, 1964. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Leverenz, Humboldt Walter, 1909-. Oral history interview with Humboldt Walter Leverenz, 1979 July 10. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Crane, H. R. (Horace Richard), 1907-2007. Oral history interview with H. R. Crane, 1973 March 28 and 18 June 1974. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Froman, Darol Kenneth, 1906-. Oral history interview with Darol Kenneth Froman, 1976 June 7. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Truesdell, C. (Clifford), 1919-. Truesdell, C., papers, 1939-1989. University of Texas Libraries
referencedIn Seitz, Frederick, 1911-2008. Oral history interview with Frederick Seitz, 1981 January 26 to 1982 March 16. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Livingston, M. Stanley (Milton Stanley). Oral history interview with Milton Stanley Livingston, 1967 August 21. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn American Physical Society. New York State Section. Fall Meeting (1984 : Rochester, N.Y.). Symposium honoring Lee Alvin DuBridge [sound recording] / 1984 September 21-22. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Dicke, Robert H. (Robert Henry). Oral history interview with Robert Henry Dicke, 1985 June 18. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Ramsey, Norman, 1915-2011. Oral history interview with Norman Ramsey, 1982 June 24. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Slater, John C. (John Clarke), 1900-1976. Oral history interview with John Clarke Slater, 1970 February 23 and 7. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Niels Bohr Library. History of physics institutional history collection L-S, [ca. 1883]-1989, (bulk 1960-1989). Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
referencedIn Farnsworth, Harrison Edward, 1896-1989. Intellectual autobiography and supplement, ca. 1969. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Lee A. DuBridge papers, 1932-1986 California Institute of Technology. Archives.
referencedIn Robinson, Denis Morrell, 1907-. Oral history interview with Denis Morrell Robinson, 1978 May 23. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Thomas, Helen Meriwether Lewis. Papers, 1890-1997 (inclusive). Radcliffe College, Archives
referencedIn Bowles, Edward Lindley, 1897-1990. Oral history interview with Edward Lindley Bowles, 1982 June 30. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Pound, Robert Vivian, 1919-. The story of some experiments in physics, 1987. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Nordheim, Lothar, 1899-. Oral history interview with Lothar Wolfgang Nordheim, 1977 July 24. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Clapp, Roger Edge, 1919-1990. Papers, 1942-1991. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Zacharias, Jerrold Reinach, 1905-1986. Oral history interview with Jerrold Reinach Zacharias, 1982 June 21. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Maxwell, E. Oral history interview with Emanuel Maxwell, 1983 March 4. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Melville Eastham Papers, 1908-1973, (bulk 1930-1964) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn White, Milton Grandison, 1910-1979. Oral history interview Milton Grandison White, 1972 May 11 to 1975 February 28. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Dicke, Robert H. (Robert Henry). Response to Laser History Project Survey, 1983. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Bainbridge, Kenneth T. (Kenneth Tompkins), 1904-1996. Reminiscences of Kenneth Tompkins Bainbridge : oral history, 1960. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Axel, Peter, 1923-1983. Papers, 1940-1982. University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign
referencedIn DuBridge, Lee A. (Lee Alvin), 1901-1994. Papers, 1932-1986. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Fan, H. Y. Oral history interview with Hsu Yun Fan, 1977 April 22. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Fisk, James B. (James Brown), 1910-1981. Recollections of Fisk's career including his research at Bell Laboratories, work at MIT Radiation Laboratory, and work on magnetrons. 1973. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Morse, Philip M. (Philip McCord), 1903-1985. Autobiographical data, ca. 1962. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Ridenour, Louis N. (Louis Nicot), 1911-1959. Louis N. Ridenour papers, 1917-1960 (bulk 1945-1959). Library of Congress
referencedIn Bloembergen, N. Oral history interview with Nicolaas Bloembergen, 1983 June 27. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Radiation Laboratory. Personnel Directories, 1945. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Hill, A. G. (Albert Gordon), 1910-1996. Oral history interview with Albert Gordon Hill, 1982 June 25. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Office of the President, records of Karl Taylor Compton and James Rhyne Killian, 1930-1959 Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries
referencedIn Hansen, William W., 1909-1949. Notes on lectures given at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1941-1944. UC Berkeley Libraries
referencedIn Longmire, Conrad L. Oral history interview with Conrad L. Longmire, 1987 April 30. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
referencedIn Hall, J. L. (John L.), 1934-. Oral history interview with John L. Hall, 1979 February 21. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library
creatorOf Collection of Papers and Records of the Radiation Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries
referencedIn Stanford University. W.W. Hansen Laboratories. Stanford University, W.W. Hansen Laboratories, klystron reports and patents, 1936-1949. Stanford University. Department of Special Collections and University Archives
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith American Physical Society. New York State Section. Fall Meeting (1984 : Rochester, N.Y.) corporateBody
associatedWith Axel, Peter, 1923-1983. person
associatedWith Bainbridge, Kenneth T. (Kenneth Tompkins), 1904-1996. person
associatedWith Beams, Jesse W. (Jesse Wakefield), 1898-1977. person
associatedWith Bloembergen, N. person
associatedWith Bowles, Edward Lindley, 1897-1990. person
associatedWith Bush, Vannevar, 1890-1974. person
associatedWith Clapp, Roger Edge, 1919-1990. person
associatedWith Crane, H. R. (Horace Richard), 1907-2007. person
associatedWith Dicke, Robert H. (Robert Henry) person
associatedWith DuBridge, Lee A. (Lee Alvin), 1901-1994. person
associatedWith Eastham, Melville, 1885-1964. person
associatedWith Fan, H. Y. person
associatedWith Farnsworth, Harrison Edward, 1896-1989. person
associatedWith Fisk, James B. (James Brown), 1910-1981. person
associatedWith Froman, Darol Kenneth, 1906- person
associatedWith Hall, J. L. (John L.), 1934- person
associatedWith Hansen, William W., 1909-1949. person
associatedWith Helen Meriwether Lewis Thomas person
associatedWith Hill, A. G. (Albert Gordon), 1910-1996. person
associatedWith James, Hubert Maxwell, 1908-1986. person
associatedWith Leverenz, Humboldt Walter, 1909- person
associatedWith Livingston, M. Stanley (Milton Stanley) person
associatedWith Longmire, Conrad L. person
associatedWith Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Office of the President corporateBody
associatedWith Maurer, Robert Joseph, 1913- person
associatedWith Maxwell, E. person
associatedWith Mayall, N. U. (Nicholas Ulrich), 1906-1993. person
associatedWith Morse, Philip M. (Philip McCord), 1903-1985. person
associatedWith Niels Bohr Library. corporateBody
associatedWith Nordheim, Lothar, 1899- person
associatedWith Pound, Robert Vivian, 1919- person
associatedWith Purcell, Edward M. person
associatedWith Ramsey, Norman, 1915-2011. person
associatedWith Ridenour, Louis N. (Louis Nicot), 1911-1959. person
associatedWith Robinson, Denis Morrell, 1907- person
associatedWith Seitz, Frederick, 1911-2008. person
associatedWith Slater, John C. (John Clarke), 1900-1976. person
associatedWith Stanford University. W.W. Hansen Laboratories. corporateBody
associatedWith Thomas, Helen Meriwether Lewis. person
associatedWith Truesdell, C. (Clifford), 1919- person
associatedWith Trump, John George, 1907-1985. person
associatedWith United States. Office of Scientific Research and Development. National Defense Research Committee corporateBody
associatedWith Van Atta, Lester C. (Lester Clare), 1905- person
associatedWith White, Milton Grandison, 1910-1979. person
associatedWith W.W. Hansen Laboratories of Physics corporateBody
associatedWith Zacharias, Jerrold Reinach, 1905-1986. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Subject
Massachusetts Institute of Technology--History
Radar--History
World War, 1939-1945--Radar
Radar--Research
Occupation
Activity
Scientists--Directories

Corporate Body

Americans

English

Information

Permalink: http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6449g9p

Ark ID: w6449g9p

SNAC ID: 76636564