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George Placzek papers 1934-1955

Description of Collection


American Institute of Physics. Niels Bohr Library & Archives.

Papers created by

Placzek, G. (George), 1905-1955

Size of collection

5 linear feet
10 manuscript boxes

Short description of collection

Correspondence, typescripts and manuscripts, scientific papers, research notes, and mathematical calculations of George Placzek.

Language(s) of collection


Collection number:


Biographical Note

Physicist (atomic structure, quantum mechanics, and nuclear reactors). Collaborator, Institute for Theoretical Physics, Copenhagen, 1932-1934, 1935-1938; temporary principal scientific officer, Directorate of Atomic Energy, Great Britain, 1942-1945; member of staff, Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, 1945-1946; member, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton University from 1948.

Scope and Contents of Collection

Contains correspondence; typescripts and manuscripts; scientific papers; research notes and mathematical calculations. Undated manuscript drafts of papers on nuclear physics, including an untitled paper on the compound nucleus. Collection of scientific papers (1950-1954) by others, dealing with research on atomic and molecular structures. Research notes and detailed algebraic calculations (probably circa 1950s but undated) concern Placzek's work on neutron scattering of crystals and the theory of Bose gases. Correspondence (1934-1952) both personal and professional, a portion of which details his interest in the study of Piero della Francesca's works on geometry at the Vatican, including a letter of recommendation to the conservator of the Vatican manuscripts, a description of the manuscripts, and reference notes. Correspondents include: Hans A. Bethe, Niels Bohr, Norris Bradbury, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, Sir James Chadwick, Sir John Douglas Cockcroft, Enrico Fermi, Leopold Infeld, Kenneth Hay Kingdon, Arnold N. Lowan, Robert Eugene Marshak, Robert Green Sachs, Chauncey Guy Suits, Richard C. Tolman, George Volkoff, Philip Wallace, Gian Carlo Wick, Eugene Wigner, Chen Ning Yang.

Restrictions on Use and Access

Researchers must have an approved access application on file in order to access archival materials.

Selected Search Terms

These papers have been indexed in the International Catalog of Sources for History of Physics and Allied Sciences (ICOS) using the following terms. Those seeking related materials should search under these terms.


Bethe, Hans A. (Hans Albrecht), 1906-2005
Bohr, Niels, 1885-1962
Bradbury, Norris, 1909-1997
Chadwick, James, 1891-1974
Chandrasekhar, S. (Subrahmanyan), 1910-1995
Cockcroft, John Douglas, Sir, 1897-1967
Fermi, Enrico, 1901-1954.
Infeld, Leopold, 1898-1968
Kingdon, K. H. (Kenneth Hay), 1894-
Lowan, Arnold Noah, 1898-
Marshak, Robert E. (Robert Eugene), 1916-1992
Piero, della Francesca, 1416?-1492
Sachs, Robert Green, 1916-
Suits, C. Guy (Chauncey Guy), 1905-1991
Tolman, Richard Chace, 1881-1948.
Volkoff, George
Wallace, Philip R. (Philip Russell), 1915-
Wick, G. C. (Gian Carlo)
Wigner, Eugene Paul, 1902-
Yang, Chen Ning, 1922-

Subject terms

Art and science.
Atomic structure.
Bose-Einstein gas.
Geometry--Early works to 1800
Manuscripts--Conservation and restoration
Nuclear energy--Government policy. United States
Nuclear physics.
Quantum statistics.
Raman effect.
Spectrum analysis.

Genre terms


Organization and Arrangement of Collection

Arranged into three series

  • Series I: Correspondence, proceedings, notes, and typescripts
  • Series II: Manuscripts
  • Series III: Calculations

Preferred Citation of Collection

Box [number], Folder [number], George Placzek papers, 1934-1955. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library & Archives, College Park, MD 20740, USA.

Administrative Information


Finding Aid to the George Placzek papers, 1934-1955


American Institute of Physics Niels Bohr Library & Archives

One Physics Ellipse
College Park, MD 20740


Encoding Information

Machine-readable finding aid encoded by Sarah Cochrane in 2017. Any revisions made to this finding aid occurred as part of the editing and encoding process.

Series I: Correspondence, proceedings, notes, and typescripts

Box 1 Folder 1 Correspondence, 1934-1952
Folder 2 University of California - Interim report of the committee on Academic Freedon to the Academic Senate, Northern Section, of the University of California, 1 February 1951
Folder 3 Proceedings of the Third Annual Rochester Conference on High Energy Physics (1 of 3), 1952
Folder 4 Proceedings of the Third Annual Rochester Conference on High Energy Physics (2 of 3), 1952
Folder 5 Proceedings of the Third Annual Rochester Conference on High Energy Physics (3 of 3), 1952
Folder 6 Notes preparatory to a study of Bose gas, ca. 1954-1956
Folder 7 Preliminary material for study of the geometry of Piero della Francesca, ca. 1955
Folder 8 Curriculum vitae, undated
Folder 9 Notes on hydrodynamics (manuscript), undated
Folder 10 Notes on thermodynamics, 200B, undated
Folder 11 Typescripts and manuscripts (by Placzek or unknown), undated
Folder 12 Typescripts or articles by Niels Bohr, undated
Folder 13 Typescripts (reproductions), no author; Ferromagnetism lectures, undated
Folder 14 Typescripts (reproductions), no author (probably lecture notes), undated

Series II: Manuscripts

Box 1 Folder 15 Report: The Theory of Neutron Diffraction by Gases I - Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd, Chalk River Project, May 1952
Folder 16 AEC Cross Sections Committee - Thermal Cross Sectyions (Preliminary edition), 1 June 1951
Folder 17 Anderson, H. L. and E. Fermi - Scattering and capture of pions by hydrogen, undated
Box 2 Folder 1 Ashkin, J. and Wick, G. C. - Comment on the "Impulse approximation", undated
Folder 2 Bethe, H. A. - The hydrogen bomb, undated
Folder 3 Bohr, Aage - On the quantization of angular momenta in heavy nuclei, undated
Folder 4 Bohr, A. and B. R. Mottelson - Rotational states in even-even nuclei, undated
Folder 5 Burgy, M., D. J. Hughes, J. R. Wallace, et al. - Double transmission and depolarization of neutrons, undated
Folder 6 "Lectures on the theory and design of alternating-gradient proton synchrotron" (CERN Protron Synchrotron Group), 1953
Folder 7 Chew, Geoffrey and Goldberger, M. L. - The scattering of elementary particles by complex nuclei, ca. 1955
Folder 8 Chew, G. F. and H. W. Lewis - A phenomenological treatment of photo-meson production from deuterons, 24 July 1951
Folder 9 Coester, F. - Influence of extranuclear fields on angular correlations, September 1953
Folder 10 Cooper, L. N. and Tobocman, W. - Deuteron stripping and the problem of nuclear radii, ca. 1955
Folder 11 Dyson, Freeman J. - The use of the Tamm-Dancoff method in field theory, 16 April 1953
Folder 12 Eden, R. J. - Covariant Integral Equations for Heisenberg operators, ca. 1955
Folder 13 Ekstein, H. - Multiple elastic scattering and radiation damping: II, ca. 1951
Folder 14 Fermi, E., H. L. Anderson, D. E. Nagle - Angular distribution of pions scattered by hydrogen, undated
Folder 15 Fermi, E., Metropolis, N. and E. Felix Alei - Phase shift analysis of the scattering of negative pions by hydrogen, ca. 1950s
Folder 16 Fermi, E., and C. N. Yang - Are mesons elementary particles?, undated
Folder 17 Feschbach, H., C. E. Porter, and V. F. Weisskopf - The formation of a compound nucleus in neutron reactions, undated
Folder 18 Feschbach, H., C. E. Porter, and V. F. Weisskopf - A model for nuclear reactions with neutrons, undated
Folder 19 Fitch, Val L. and J. Rainwater - Studies of x-rays from mu-mesic atons, undated
Folder 20 Friedman, F. L. and V. F. Weisskopf - The compound nucleus, August 1955
Folder 21 Gell-mann, M. and A Pais - The behavior of neutral particles under charge conjugation, ca. 1950s
Folder 22 Gell-mann, M. and A. Pais - Theoretical views on the new particles, July 1954
Folder 23 Goldberger, M. L. and Adams, E. N. - The configurational distribution function in quantum statistical mechanics, undated
Folder 24 Goldhaber, M. and A. W. Sunyar - Classification of nuclear isomers, 22 May 1951
Box 3 Folder 1 Hoffmann, Metropolis, alei and Bethe - Pion-hydrogen phase shift analysis between 120 and 217 MeV, 1954
Folder 2 Horowitz, J. and A. M. L. Messiah - Sur les réacions (dp) et (dn), 2 June 1953
Folder 3 Horowitz, J. and Messiah, A. M. L. - two papers, undated
Folder 4 Hughes, D. J., M. T. Burgy and W. E. Woolf - Scattering and polarization of neutrons in an iron single crystal, 16 August 1950
Folder 5 Hughes, D. J., M. T. Burgy - Reflection of neutrons from magnetized mirrors, 6 September 1950
Folder 6 Jost, R. and Pais A. - On the scattering of a particle by a static potential, undated
Folder 7 Klein, G. and Prigogine, I. - "Sur la mecanique statistique des phenomes irreversibles; III", undated
Folder 8 Lax, M. and Burstein, E. - Optical absorption in Indium Antimunide, undated
Folder 9 Lax, M. and Lebowitz, H. - A moment of singularity analysis of vibration spectra, undated
Folder 10 Lee, T. D., Low, F. E. and Pines, D. - The motion of slow electrons in a polar crystal, undated
Folder 11 Lévy, Maurice M. - Notes on the pseudoscalar two-nucleons problem, undated
Folder 12 Lévy, Maurice M. - On the symmetrical pseudoscalar moson theory of nuclear forces, undated
Folder 13 Lloyd, Stuart P. - Explicit ? - ? angular correlations II: polarization correlations, undated
Folder 14 Low, Francis - A note on natural line shape, undated
Folder 15 Marshall, J., L. Marshall, D. Nagle and W. Skolnik - Scattering of 314 MeV polarized protons by deuterium, undated
Folder 16 Marshall, H., L. Marshall and V. A. Nedzel - Search for polarization in double scattering of 450 MeV protons from Be, undated
Folder 17 MIT - Notes from seminar in nuclear science and engineering (1 of 2), 1947
Folder 18 MIT - Notes from seminars in nuclear science and engineering (2 of 2), 1947
Folder 19 Columbia University Department of Physics - Neutron beam spectrometer studies of oxygen - Melkonian, Rainwater and Havens, 1947
Folder 20 Nambu, Yoichiro - Analysis of the ?-p+ production data observed at California Institute of Technology, September 1953
Folder 21 Newton, Roger G. - Radiative effects in a constant field, June 1954
Folder 22 Newton, Roger G. - Radiative correction to electron scattering, September 1954
Folder 23 Newton, R. G. - A note on the Born approximation zeros for high energy electron scattering, October 1954
Box 4 Folder 1 Pais, A. - On the V-particles, undated
Folder 2 Pais, A. - Spherical spinors in a euclidean 4-space, ca. 1955
Folder 3 Pais, A. and R. Jost - Selection rules imposed by charge conjugation and charge symmetry, undated
Folder 4 Peierls, R. E. - The commutation laws of relativistic field theory, undated
Folder 5 Rabi, I. I. - Science as a way of life, 1950
Folder 6 Racah, Giulio - Group theory and spectroscopy, undated
Folder 7 Rainwater, James - Nuclear energy level argument for a spheroidal nuclear model, 9 May 1950
Folder 8 Roberts, K. V. - Papers on strong-coupling theory and related topics [bibliography], February 1952
Folder 9 Sands, Teasdale and Walker - Negative to positive ratio of photomesons from deuterium, May 1954
Folder 10 Seidl, F. G. P., D. J. Hughes, H. Palersky, et al., - "Fast chopper" time-of-fight measurement of neutron resonances, undated
Folder 11 Siegert, A. J. F. - On the theory of condensation, June 1954
Folder 12 A general account of the development of methods of using atomic energy for military purposes under the auspices of the United States Government - H. D. Smyth [incomplete after page A4-2], 1940-1945
Folder 13 Tisza, Laszlo - On the general theory of phase transitions, undated
Folder 14 Tittman, Jay - The energy dependence of the resonant scattering of slow neutrons in gold, undated
Folder 15 Walker, Oakley and Tollestrup - Photoproduction of neutral mesons in hydrogen at high energies, ca. 1950s
Folder 16 Weisskopf, V. F. - Analysis of neutron resonances, undated
Folder 17 Report: Conference on physics, Pocono Manor, PA - Mimeograph copy of notes by J. A. Wheeler, 30 March to 1 April 1948
Folder 18 Wick, G. C., A. S. Wightman and E. P. Wigner - The intrinsic parity of elementary particles, undated
Folder 19 Yang, C. N. - Selection rules for the dematerialization of a particle into two protons, undated
Folder 20 Yang, C. N. - The spontaneous magnetization of a two dimensional Ising model, undated
Folder 21 Yang, C. N. and David Feldman - The S matrix in Heisenberg representation, undated
Folder 22 Yang, C. N. and R. L. Mills - Conservation of isotopic spin and isotopic gauge incariance, undated
Folder 23 Yu, Ming Chen W. and Guth E. - On the theory of multiple scattering, particularly of charged particles, undated
Folder 24 Yuon, J. - La diffusion des neutrons lents dans les substances hydrogenees, principes de l'optique du neutron, suivis d'une remarque sur l'interaction electron neutron, 23 April 1952

Series III: Calculations

Box 5 Folder 1 Calculations, "Incomprehensible", undated
Folder 2 Calculations, "Efà Cap.", undated
Folder 3 Calculations, "Verlansammung I", undated
Folder 4 Calculations, "Diff. in air", undated
Folder 5 Calculations, "1/? capture", undated
Folder 6 Calculations, "DTH div.", undated
Folder 7 Calculations, "English", undated
Folder 8 Calculations, "Old capture", undated
Folder 9 Calculations, undated
Folder 10 Calculations, undated
Folder 11 Calculations, undated
Folder 12 Calculations, undated
Folder 13 Calculations, undated
Box 6 Folder 1 Calculations, undated
Folder 2 Calculations, undated
Folder 3 Calculations, undated
Folder 4 Calculations, undated
Folder 5 Calculations, undated
Folder 6 Calculations, undated
Folder 7 Calculations, undated