The GEC Research Laboratories 1919-1984
by Robert Clayton and Joan Algar
The Institution of Engineering and Technology, 1989
eISBN: 978-1-84919-403-7 | Cloth: 978-0-86341-146-5
Library of Congress Classification TK7855.C53 1989
Dewey Decimal Classification 621.3810720421


The Research Laboratories of the GEC were conceived in 1916, started work in 1919 and moved to their well-known buildings in Wembley in 1922.

This book deals with their activities from the beginnings until the end of 1984. The opening chapter describes their origins, organisation and philosophy, describing particularly the pattern set by Sir Clifford Paterson, the first Director, much of which was to continue after his death in 1948. The second chapter summarises the work of the Laboratories, decade by decade, while subsequent chapters are a series of essays covering particular subjects such as lamps and lighting, valves, communications and semiconductors. The diverse number of projects undertaken in the 1939-45 war are described, and other chapters deal with the substantial work on solid state physics in the 1950s and 1960s, the work on optical fibres and optical communications in the 1970s and 1980s, the many aspects of work on technology and engineering, and the vital supporting role of the work on materials characterisation. The final chapters deal with patents, publications and some statistics on the Laboratories.

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