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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.
Work at Caltech during the 1930s; when the Cockcroft-Walton paper appeared in 1932, he shifted from X-ray work to nuclear work. Development of ion sources and detection equipment, the building of a second tube at the High Voltage Laboratory, old tube is used in cancer therapy. Begins a systematic study of energy levels in light nuclei after discovery of artificial radioactivity. Interest in nuclear physics in Caltech. Nuclear work during the war, and the increase in level of support by Office of Naval Research (ONR) after the war.
<p>Then, the project finally got authorized in 1961 — but again after a rather amusing set of coincidences. At that time the Stanford project was sort of known as the Republican project because Eisenhower had proposed it to a Democratic Congress. At that time there was a project that the Democrats wanted in Congress which the Republican administration did not want. This was for the Hanford Reactor to generate power into the electrical net, because it was considered to be socialized electricity by the Republicans, to have power generated by a production reactor.