Lauritsen, Charles Christian, 1892-1968 (Nuclear Physicist)
- Existence: 1892 - 1968
Background: Caltech Professor of Physics, 1930-1962; Caltech alumnus (PhD, 1929).
Description: Lauritsen may be seen as one of the three great American pioneers of nuclear physics, in company with Merle Tuve and Ernest O. Lawrence. Over the years, discoveries made by Lauritsen's research group were widely influential in nuclear astrophysics, radiation therapy (specifically, radiation dosimetry), mirror nuclei and charge symmetry, nuclear beta decay, the energy of the sun, atomic spectroscopy, the time scales of nucleosynthesis, and solid state physics. He played a key role in placing rockets in the US's weapons arsenal in World War II, thereby directly influencing the course and outcome of the war. His later presence as a regular and esteemed advisor to the US government on scientific and military matters helped to shape American defense policy during much of the Cold War era.
Collection Notes: Papers, 1927-1968. Includes research notes and data, correspondence (both personal and official), reprints, photographs, and miscellany relative to his work at Caltech, for private organizations, and for government agencies. The largest section is correspondence covering a period of over thirty years, however there is none from World War II and very little from the 1930s. A card file name index is also available. Organizations and corporations, the second largest section, includes his consulting work and professional activities, though there are large gaps because a great deal of his government work was classified.
Collection size: 15 boxes, 6 linear ft.
Finding aid available at the Archives.
Photo of Charles C. Lauritsen (PhotoNet).
See also: Thomas Lauritsen.
Found in 12 Collections and/or Records:
The Charles C. Lauritsen papers consist of correspondence, patent material, research notes and data, photographs, reprints, and materials relating to work for Caltech, government agancies, and private organizations. The complete finding aid is available at the Online Archive of California, and the link can be accessed in the External Documents section of this record.
- Unprocessed Material 8
- Archival Object 2
- Collection 2
- Physics 8
- Manuscript Collection 3
- Memorial 2
- Oral History 2
- Photo Archive 2
- World War II 2
- Astronomy 1
- Astrophysicists--Archives 1
- Astrophysics 1
- Cosmochronology 1
- Nobel Prize winners 1
- Nuclear astrophysics 1
- Nuclear physicists--Archives 1
- Nuclear physics--Research 1
- Physicists--United States--20th century 1
- Physics--Congresses 1
- Physics--Study and teaching 1
- Rockets--Research 1
- Scientific Apparatus 1
- Solar neutrinos--Research 1 + ∧ less