“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Berkeley in Alameda County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)

The Lawrence 37-Inch Cyclotron

The Lawrence 37-Inch Cyclotron Marker image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, December 25, 2013
1. The Lawrence 37-Inch Cyclotron Marker
Inscription. This is the electromagnet for the world's first major cyclotron. With it, professor Ernest O. Lawrence and others perfected the difficult cyclotron technology. Originally a 27-inch cyclotron, it was converted to a 37-inch instrument in 1937. Weighing 85 tons, this cyclotron was a leviathan of science in its time. It lead the world in atomic particle energies from 1932 until 1939, opening new frontiers in nuclear research.

Discoveries with this cyclotron were numerous, including radioisotopes, such as iodine-131, as well as the first man-made element, technetium. Modified, the magnet first showed in 1941-42 that uranium-235 could be separated magnetically on a large scale.

In 1945, it became the pioneer synchrocyclotron, confirming for the first time the theory of phase stability: the principle governing the operation of the great accelerators built since. This cyclotron stands as a major stepping-stone in the history of science.

May 20, 1968
Erected 1968.
Location. 37° 52.762′ N, 122° 14.758′ W. Marker is in Berkeley, California, in Alameda County. Marker is on Centennial Drive south of Grizzly Peak Boulevard, on the left when traveling south. Click for map. Marker is at
The Lawrence 37-Inch Cyclotron Marker - Wide View image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, December 25, 2013
2. The Lawrence 37-Inch Cyclotron Marker - Wide View
The cyclotron is visible here directly in the middle, by the trees.
or near this postal address: 1 Centennial Drive, Berkeley CA 94720, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Temple of Wings (approx. 0.6 miles away); Annie and Bernard Maybeck House (approx. 0.6 miles away); Jensen House (approx. 0.6 miles away); Daley’s Scenic Park Street Improvenents (approx. 0.6 miles away); Allenoke Manor (approx. 0.7 miles away); "Annie's Oak" (approx. 0.7 miles away); Gilman Hall (approx. ¾ mile away); Panoramic Hill (approx. ¾ mile away). Click for a list of all markers in Berkeley.
More about this marker. The marker is found on the grounds of the Lawrence Hall of Science.
Also see . . .
1. . Accelerators for Society explains cyclotrons, bevatrons, and synchrocyclotrons in a manner that is almost intelligible to the layperson. (Submitted on December 24, 2015.) 

2. Cyclotron - Wikipedia. "A cyclotron is a type of particle accelerator invented by Ernest O. Lawrence in 1932 in which charged particles accelerate outwards from the center along a spiral path. The particles are held to a spiral trajectory by a static magnetic field and accelerated by a rapidly varying (radio frequency) electric field. Lawrence was awarded the 1939 Nobel prize in physics for this invention. Cyclotrons
The Lawrence 37-Inch Cyclotron image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, December 25, 2013
3. The Lawrence 37-Inch Cyclotron
"In 1928 Ernest Lawrence of the University of California, inspired by the work of Widerøe, had the idea of utilizing a curved path for a particle accelerator. A magnetic field perpendicular to the plane of motion of an accelerated particle will result in the particle taking a curved path. By studying the simple relationship between the forces acting on the particle, Lawrence realised that the increase in the radius of the path taken by the particle is compensated for by the increased velocity of the particle if the magnetic field, the charge of the particle and the particle's mass remain constant. With this in mind, he built what became known as a Cyclotron...." - Accelerators for Society
were the most powerful particle accelerator technology until the 1950s when they were superseded by the synchrotron, and are still used to produce particle beams in physics and nuclear medicine...."
(Submitted on December 24, 2015.) 
Additional keywords. physics chemistry
Categories. Science & Medicine
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. This page has been viewed 259 times since then and 62 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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