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Table of Contents

Biography

AbstractImportant DatesOccupationPlacesSubjects

Relationships

PeopleInstitutions

Resources

Archival as AuthorArchival as SubjectPublished as AuthorPublished as Subject

Donald William Kerst

Photo

Dates

November 1, 1911 – August 19, 1993

Authorized Form of Name

Kerst, Donald William, 1911-1993

Additional Forms of Names

Kerst, Donald W.

Kerst, Donald W. (Donald William), 1911-1993

Biography

Abstract

Donald William Kerst was Emeritus Professor of Physics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison (1962-1993). Other institutional affiliations included General Atomics and the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. His research interests included particle accelerators and betatrons.

Important Dates

November 1, 1911Birth, Galena (Ill.).

1934Obtained BA, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Madison (Wis.).

1937Obtained PhD in Physics, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Madison (Wis.).

1937 – 1938X-ray tube developer, General Electric X-Ray Corporation.

1938 – 1957Instructor to Professor of Physics, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Urbana (Ill.).

1940 – 1941Physicist, Research Laboratory, General Electric Company.

1943 – 1945Physicist and Group Leader, Manhattan Project, Los Alamos Laboratory.

1951Member, National Academy of Sciences.

1953 – 1957Technical Director, Midwestern University Research Association.

1957 – 1962Researcher, John Jay Hopkins Laboratory for Pure and Applied Science, General Atomics, San Diego (Calif.).

1962 – 1993E. M. Terry Professor of Physics (1962-1980) and Emeritus Professor of Physics (1980-1993), University of Wisconsin, Madison, Madison (Wis.).

1984Awarded James Clerk Maxwell Prize for Plasma Physics, American Physical Society.

1988Awarded Robert R. Wilson Prize for Achievement in the Physics of Particle Accelerators, American Physical Society.

August 19, 1993Death, Madison (Wis.).

Occupation

Plasma physicist.

Places

Birth

Galena (Ill.)

Undergraduate Education

Madison (Wis.)

Graduate Education

Madison (Wis.)

Employment

Urbana (Ill.)

San Diego (Calif.)

Madison (Wis.)

Death

Madison (Wis.)

Subjects

Betatrons.

Nuclear physics.

Particle accelerators.

Plasma physics.

Relationships

People

Family

Kerst, Dorothy Birkett

Wife.

Kerst, Herman S.

Brother.

Kerst, Kenneth A.

Brother.

Kerst, Marilyn E.

Daughter.

Kerst, Richard N.

Brother.

Kerst, Stephen M.

Son.

Advisors & Collaborators

Serber, R. (Robert)

Collaborated on early development of the betatron. Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Colleagues

Abrahams, Elihu

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Almy, Gerald Marks, 1904-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Aronson, Samuel, 1942-

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Bacher, Robert F. (Robert Fox), 1905-2004

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Bardeen, John

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Barschall, H. H. (Henry Herman), 1915-1997

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Chew, Geoffrey F.

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Cooper, Leon N. (Leon Neil), 1930-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Creutz, E.

Both employed at General Atomics.

Drell, Sidney D. (Sidney David), 1926-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Duffield, Robert B.

Both employed at General Atomics.

Frauenfelder, Hans, 1922-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Froman, Darol K. (Darol Kenneth), 1906-1997

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Goldhaber, Gertrude S. -1998

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Goldhaber, Maurice, 1911-2011

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Haeberli, W. (Willy)

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Hahn, E. L. (Erwin Louis), 1921-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Haworth, Leland J. (Leland John), 1904-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Herb, R. G. (Raymond George), 1908-1996

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Hershkowitz, N. (Noah), 1941-

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Jackson, John David, 1925-2016

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Kraushaar, William L.

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Lagally, Max G.

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Lazarus, David, 1921-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Lieb, Elliott H.

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Loomis, F. W. (Francis Wheeler), 1889-1976

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Low, Francis E. (Francis Eugene), 1921-2007

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Manley, John Henry, 1907-

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Morrison, Philip

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Novick, Robert

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Oppenheimer, J. Robert, 1904-1967

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Overhauser, Albert Warner, 1925-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Pines, David, 1924-

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Ramsey, Norman, 1915-2011

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Rosenbluth, M. N.

Both employed at General Atomics.

Rossi, Bruno, 1905-1993

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Rostoker, Norman

Both employed at General Atomics.

Sachs, Robert Green, 1916-

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Segrè, Emilio

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Seitz, Frederick, 1911-2008

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Simmons, Ralph Oliver

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Slichter, Charles P.

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Staub, Hans H.

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Tape, Gerald Frederick, 1915-2005

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Webb, M. B. (Maurice Barnett), 1926-

Both employed at University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Wheatley, John Charles

Both employed at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Williams, John H. (John Harry), 1908-

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Wilson, Robert R., 1914-2000

Both employed at Los Alamos Laboratory, Manhattan Project.

Additional

Blewett, John P. (John Paul), 1910-

Conant, James Bryant, 1893-1978

Coolidge, William David, 1873-1975

Jewett, Frank B. (Frank Baldwin), 1879-1949

Koch, Herman William, 1920-

Lauritsen, Thomas, 1915-1973

Ohkawa, Tihiro

Van de Graaf, Robert Jemison, 1901-1967

Institutions

Major Positions

GA (Series) (San Diego, Calif.)

Researcher, John Jay Hopkins Laboratory for Pure and Applied Science.

General Electric Company. Research Laboratory

Physicist.

General Electric X-Ray Corporation

X-ray tube developer.

Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory

Leader, Water Boiler Group, Manhattan Project.

Manhattan Project (U.S.)

Leader, Water Boiler Group, Los Alamos Laboratory.

Midwestern Universities Research Association

Technical Director.

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Department of Physics

Instructor to Professor of Physics.

University of Wisconsin--Madison. Department of Physics

Obtained BA (1934) and PhD in Physics (1937). E. M. Terry Professor of Physics and Emeritus Professor of Physics.

Professional Activities & Affiliations

American Physical Society

Received 1984 James Clerk Maxwell Prize for Plasma Physics and 1988 Robert R. Wilson Prize for Achievement in the Physics of Particle Accelerators.

National Academy of Sciences (U.S.)

Member.

Resources

Archival Resources

Author

AAPM interviews with physicists in medicine [videorecordings], 1990-2014.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Donald W. Kerst papers, 1937-1959.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

Donald W. Kerst papers, 1945-1981.

University Archives

University of Wisconsin -- Madison

Steenbock Library, Madison, WI 53706, USA

Letter to William J. Hamm concerning donation of betatron to the Smithsonian Institution, 1985.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Symposium in honor of D. W. Kerst [sound recording] : high energy radiation therapy: past, present and future / Sponsored by the University of Wisconsin, North Central Chapter of AAPM, and the Midwest Chapter of AAPM; 1978 June 2.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Department of Physics Betatron Project correspondence, 1938-1970.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Department of Physics Betatron Project records, 1941-1945.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Physics Department subject file, 1925-2006.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Physics Research Laboratory betatron files, 1941-1990.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

Subject

F. W. Loomis papers, 1920-1976.

University Archives

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

1408 West Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801, USA

John P. Blewett papers, 1821-2000 (bulk 1940-1995).

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Edward Creutz, 2006 January 9 and 10.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Herman William Koch, 1986 September 16 to 11 October 1987.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with John P. Blewett, 1979 March 22 and May 11.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Philip Morrison, 1967 February 7.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Thomas Lauritsen, 1967 February 16.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Oral history interview with Tihiro Ohkawa, 2006 May 23.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Their Family Story: Bill and Becky Koch, July 2002.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Published Resources

Author

"Accelerators and the Midwestern Universities Research Association in the 1950s," in Pions to Quarks: Particle Physics in the 1950s, ed. Laurie M. Brown, Max Dresden, and Lillian Hoddeson (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press: 1989), 202-212

Subject

"Donald William Kerst: 1911-1993", Biographical Memoirs of the National Academy of Sciences

Donald Kerst Physics Today obituary.