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Springer Biographies
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Obsessed by a Dream

The Physicist Rolf Widerøe – a Giant in the History of Accelerators

Authors: Sørheim, Aashild

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  • Open access
  • First, comprehensive biography of one of the founders of the field of accelerator physics
  • Contains material and insights obtained from previously restricted archives
  • Treats both his work and life on an equal footing
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  • ISBN 978-3-030-26338-6
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About this book

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, 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 Widerøe'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.        .

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.

About the authors

Aashild Sørheim 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.

Table of contents (7 chapters)

Table of contents (7 chapters)
  • A Comfortable Home

    Pages 1-58

    Sørheim, Aashild

  • The World Awaits

    Pages 59-166

    Sørheim, Aashild

  • The Dark Chapter

    Pages 167-222

    Sørheim, Aashild

  • Treason Case Number 3418

    Pages 223-280

    Sørheim, Aashild

  • But There Was More …

    Pages 281-418

    Sørheim, Aashild

Buy this book

eBook  
  • ISBN 978-3-030-26338-6
  • This book is an open access book, you can download it for free on link.springer.com
Hardcover 49,99 €
price for India (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-26337-9
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Obsessed by a Dream
Book Subtitle
The Physicist Rolf Widerøe – a Giant in the History of Accelerators
Authors
Translated by
Stewart, F.
Series Title
Springer Biographies
Copyright
2020
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-26338-6
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-26338-6
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-26337-9
Series ISSN
2365-0613
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XXXIV, 511
Number of Illustrations
14 b/w illustrations, 14 illustrations in colour
Topics