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Appleton, Sir Edward Victor, 1892-1965 (physicist and principal of the University of Edinburgh)

 Person

Dates

  • Existence: 1892 - 1965

Biography

Appleton was born in Bradford and educated at local schools and St John's College, Cambridge where he was awarded first class honours and several prizes in both parts of the Natural Sciences Tripos (1913, 1914). He began research at the Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge with W.L. Bragg, but during his service in the Army Signals in the First World War he developed the interest in valves and 'wireless' signals which informed his subsequent research career. He returned to the Cavendish Laboratory in 1919, continuing to work on valves and, with B. van der Pol, on non-linearity, and on atmospherics. In 1924, in collaboration with M.F. Barnett, he performed a crucial experiment which enabled a reflecting layer in the atmosphere to be identified and measured; subsequent research indicated the existence of more than one reflecting layer. From 1924 to 1936 Appleton was Wheatstone Professor of Physics at King's College, London, directing research teams and, in 1932, heading an expedition to Tromsö in northern Norway as part of the programme of observations scheduled for the Second International Polar Year

He was President of the International Union of Scientific Radio (URSI), 1934-1952. In 1936 he succeeded C.T.R. Wilson in the Jacksonian Chair of Natural Philosophy at Cambridge, where he continued collaborative research on many ionospheric problems, including solar and lunar tides in the E-layer. From September 1936 he served on the re-constituted Committee for the Scientific Survey of Air Defence (the 'Tizard Committee'), and in October 1938 was appointed successor to Sir Frank Smith as Secretary to the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR). He remained at the DSIR throughout the Second World War and until 1948 when he was appointed Principal of Edinburgh University. He took up the appointment in May 1949 and remained in office until his death in 1965. Appleton was elected FRS in 1927 (Bakerian Lecture 1937, Hughes Medal 1933, Royal Medal 1950) and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1947 for his investigations into the ionosphere. He was knighted in 1941.

Found in 828 Collections and/or Records:

Correspondence between Mary L. Cartwright and Edward Appleton, c. 1946

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.247
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between Mary L. Cartwright and Edward Appleton, c. 1946. The material consists of letters, graphs and it includes draft of Cartwright's paper, 'Forced oscillations in nearly sinusoidal systems' and miscellaneous offprints on the subject by Cartwright, Littlewood, Van der Pol, etc., not all dated.

Dates: c. 1946

Correspondence between Mary Taylor and Edward Appleton, 1931-1933

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.220
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between Mary Taylor and Edward Appleton, dated 1931-1933. The material includes a translation by Taylor of a Russian paper by L. Schekulin on the subject of propagation of electromagnetic waves in ionized gas under the influence of a constant magnetic field H.

Dates: 1931-1933

Correspondence between Maurice V. Wilkes and Appleton, 1938

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.55
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between M.V. Wilkes and Edward Appleton, dated 1938. Enclosed with the material are diagrams and a draft paper on 'Theoretical ionization curves for the E region', requesting suggestions for publication.

Dates: 1938

Correspondence between Mrs Turnbull and Edward Appleton, c. 1955-1959

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.101
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between Mrs Turnbull and Edward Appleton, forwarding and discussing results, charts, etc. The material is not all dated, but it continues up to 1959 and includes a letter from Appleton, September 1959, discussing the Brussels meeting and further research projects.

Dates: c. 1955-1959

Correspondence between R. Naismith and Edward Appleton, 1944-1949

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.407
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between R. Naismith and Edward Appleton, dated 1944-1949. The material relates to publications and research in to the E Layer and includes data, diagrams, etc.

Dates: 1944-1949

Correspondence between the British Broadcasting Corporation and Edward Appleton, 1946-1947

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.227
Scope and Contents

The material consists of correspondence between the British Broadcasting Corporation and Edward Appleton, dated 1946-1947, during the period of the Giacobinids meteor showers [now known as the October Draconids]. It includes graphs.

Dates: 1946-1947

Correspondence between W.G. Greenwood and Edward Appleton, 1936-1937

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.291
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between W.G. Greenwood and Edward Appleton, dated 1936-1937. The material includes research reports on recombination and comments by Appleton.

Dates: 1936-1937

Correspondence between W.J.G. Beynon and Edward Appleton, 1949-1950

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.365
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between W.J.G. Beynon and Edward Appleton, dated 1949-1950. The material relates to U.R.S.I [Union Radio-Scientifique Internationale] and M.C.I. [Mixed Commission on the Ionosphere] affairs, publications, meetings, etc.

Dates: 1949-1950

Correspondence between W.J.G. Beynon and Edward Appleton, 1951

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.368
Scope and Contents

The material relates to U.R.S.I. [Union Radio-Scientifique Internationale] and M.C.I. [Mixed Commission on the Ionosphere] affairs, including Third Polar Year proposed for 1957-1958 and some research matters are discussed. There is also included a U.R.S.I. report on 'Terminology and units' with a letter from D.F. Martyn.

Dates: 1951

Correspondence between W.J.G. Beynon and Edward Appleton, 1952

 File
Identifier: Coll-37/C.369
Scope and Contents

Correspondence between W.J.G. Beynon and Edward Appleton. The material is mainly regarding the meeting of the M.C.I. [Mixed Commission on the Ionosphere] at Canberra, August 1952, and also the membership and organisation of M.C.I.

Dates: 1952

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Subject
Physics 663
Correspondence 190
Radio Broadcasting 45
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Magnetism 24
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