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Family background and early education; early science interests (telegraph and radio transmission), wins American Chemistry Society Contest in high school. Caltech for both undergraduate and graduate studies, 1926-1934, comments on courses, teachers (Richard C. Tolman, Paul Epstein) and fellow students (Chet Carlson, the inventor of Xerox). Joins Charles Lauritsen's group as graduate student (nuclear physics), gets involved in research projects. J.
World War II work at the MIT Radiation Laboratory. Early postwar years at Princeton University. Research orientations; application of microwave techniques to determination of fundamental atomic constants. Background to paper on super-radiance. Government committee work to about the mid-1950s. Princeton Applied Research, a company organized by Dicke & others. Contact with Charles H. Townes. Consulting for Radio Corporation of America; patent obligations to RCA. Sources of financial support for research; Signal Corps support. Methods for choosing student thesis topics.
Early life in Illinois; B.S. from Purdue University under Karl Lark-Horovitz, 1929-1933. Visit to Technische Hochschule in Karlsruhe. Theoretical and experimental work and teaching at Harvard University, 1934-1941, under Emory L. Chaffee, Kenneth T. Bainbridge, John Van Vleck. World War II research on radar at MIT Radiation Laboratory, 1941-1946. Return to Harvard; teaching, nuclear magnetic resonance and 21-cm line research. Discusses government consulting work, 1950-1970, especially President's Science Advisory Committee, American Physical Society presidency; teaching at Harvard.