Obsessed by a Dream

Obsessed by a Dream : The Physicist Rolf Wideroe - a Giant in the History of Accelerators

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Description

This Open Access biography chronicles the life and achievements of the Norwegian engineer and physicist Rolf Wideroe. Readers who meet him in the pages of this book will wonder why he isn't better known.

The first of Wideroe's many pioneering contributions in the field of accelerator physics was the betatron, the second, the linear accelerator, both summarized in a 27 page PhD. The betatron revolutionized the fields of cancer treatment through radiation therapy and also nondestructive testing; hospitals worldwide installed Wideroe's machine and today's modern radiation treatment equipment is based on his inventions. The most recent renaissance of the linac provides unprecedented x-ray intensities at Free Electron Laser (FEL) facilities in operation and construction worldwide. .



Wideroe's story also includes a fair share of drama, particularly during World War II when both Germans and the Allies vied for his collaboration. Wideroe held leading positions in multinational industry groups and was one of the consultants for building the world's largest nuclear laboratory, CERN, in Switzerland. He gained over 200 patents, received several honorary doctorates and a number of international awards.

The author, a professional writer and maker of TV documentaries, has gained access to hitherto restricted archives in several countries, which provided a wealth of new material and insights, in particular in relation to the war years. She tells here a gripping and illuminating story.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 511 pages
  • 155 x 235 x 30.23mm | 980g
  • Cham, Switzerland
  • English
  • 1st ed. 2020
  • 14 Illustrations, color; 14 Illustrations, black and white; XXXIV, 511 p. 28 illus., 14 illus. in color.
  • 3030263371
  • 9783030263379

Back cover copy

This Open Access biography chronicles the life and achievements of the Norwegian engineer and physicist Rolf Widerøe. Readers who meet him in the pages of this book will wonder why he isn't better known.
The first of Widerøe's many pioneering contributions in the field of accelerator physics was the betatron. He later went on to build the first radiation therapy machine, an advance that would eventually revolutionize cancer treatment. Hospitals worldwide installed his machine, and today's modern radiation treatment equipment is based on his inventions. Widerøe's story also includes a fair share of drama, particularly during World War II when both Germans and the Allies vied for his collaboration. Widerøe held leading positions in multinational industry groups and was one of the consultants for building the world's largest nuclear laboratory, CERN, in Switzerland. He gained over 200 patents, received several honorary doctorates and a number of international awards.

The author, a professional writer and maker of TV documentaries, has gained access to hitherto restricted archives in several countries, which provided a wealth of new material and insights, in particular in relation to the war years. She tells here a gripping and illuminating story.
show more

Table of contents

A Comfortable Home - Formative years 1902 - 1943.- The World Awaits - The new life in Switzerland 1946 - 1996.- The Dark Chapter - Working in Germany during the war.- Treason Case number 3418 - The papers in the National Archives.- But There Was More - The papers in the British and American Intelligence Archives.- Why? - The unanswered question of why he went to Germany.- Postscript: The Letter from his Brother.
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About Aashild Sorheim

Aashild Sorheim is a professional writer and producer, with a long experience gained from working with different types of media, including TV-documentaries, commissioned educational films and interactive digital programs. She received her Cand. philol. degree from the University of Oslo and, after taking a diploma in education, began her media career with scholarships in both the USA and Europe. From 1973 to 1983 she worked as a journalist for Aftenposten, Norway's leading newspaper. Aashild is founder and former CEO of "The National Foundation for the Dissemination of Research" (1991-2005). She has been a consultant and received manuscript assignments for The Norwegian Broadcasting Company NRK, commercial companies, research institutes and professional organisations. In addition, she is the Co-founder and CEO of StreamChannel AS (since 2014), the Co-founder and CEO of KnowHow Media AS (since 1994) and has been the head of information services of the Royal Norwegian Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (1985-1990). Her TV documentary "Always Brothers. Rolf and Viggo Wideroe" was broadcast in 2016.
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