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Dr. W. D. Coolidge: Duddell Medallist

Nature volume 149, page 521 (09 May 1942) | Download Citation



THE eighteenth Duddell Medal of the Physical Society has been awarded to Dr. William David Coolidge in recognition of his pioneer work in the production of ductile tungsten and, more especially, of his invention and subsequent development of the hot-cathode high-vacuum X-ray tube which is everywhere known by his name. The medal was formally presented to him on May 1 by Viscount Halifax, H.M. Ambassador in Washington, at a dinner of the American Physical Society at Baltimore. Born in 1873, Coolidge began life on a farm in Massachusetts. He found means of entering the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he graduated in 1896 and remained until 1905, except for a short period at Leipzig. He then joined the staff of the Research Laboratory of the G.E.C., Scheneetady,N.Y.,becoming assistant director in 1908, associate director in 1932, and finally director of research and vice-president of the Company in 1940. He has been widely honoured both in his own country and in Europe: of several universities he has received honorary degrees, and of many learned societies he is an honorary member or a medallist; in Great Britain he has received the Hughes Medal (1927) of the Royal Society and the Faraday Medal (1939) of the Institution of Electrical Engineers.

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