Monday, December 20, 2010

Shocking...Robert Van de Graaff

The three founders of HVEC stand by the company's Emperor tandem test facility. L-R: Robert Van de Graaff; Denis Robinson; John Trump.

Robert Van de Graaff
December 20th, 1901 to January 16th, 1967

An "American physicist and inventor of the Van de Graaff generator, a type of high-voltage electrostatic generator that can be used as a particle accelerator in atomic research. The potential differences achieved in modern Van de Graaff generators can be up to 5 MV. It is a principle of electric fields that charges on a surface can leap off at points where the curvature is great, that is, where the radius is small. Thus, a dome of great radius will inhibit the electric discharge and added charge can reach a high voltage. This generator has been used in medical (such as high-energy X-ray production) and industrial applications (sterilization of food). In the 1950s, Van de Graaff invented the insulating core transformer able to produce high voltage direct current"

Robert Van de Graaff [Wikipedia]

Van de Graaff Generator [Wikipedia]

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