Talk Title: The Invention That Changed The World
In September 1940, more than a year before the U.S. entered WWII, a secret mission from Britain arrived in Washington, DC, bearing that country’s greatest military secrets. Chief among them: a microwave transmitter known as the cavity magnetron a thousand times more powerful than any rival transmitter known. The U.S. formed a secret lab to develop radar systems around the magnetron—the famed MIT Radiation Laboratory. Staffed by many of the country’s brightest physicists and engineers, the Rad Lab developed systems for hunting U-boats, bombing through overcast, fire-control and more. The mantra from its staffers: ‘The atomic bomb only ended the war. Radar won it.’
This talk covers the dramatic story of the Rad Lab, its importance to the war, and the sweeping impact wartime radar work made on post-war science and technology.