Anyone visiting RF Cafe (other
than by accident) almost certainly knows of
Drs. Bardeen, Brattain and Shockley fame for their transistor
invention while jointly working at the Bell Telephone Laboratories. The trio shared
The Nobel Prize in Physics in 1956. Bell was so proud of their
employees' efforts that they ran full page advertisements to boast of the accomplishment.
This one appeared in the February 1957 edition of Radio & Television News. Alas,
Ma Bell's moment of glory was a bit diminished by needing to add a footnote admitting
that Drs. Bardeen and Shockley no longer work there. Note that while the ad says
the transistor was announced in 1948, the first demonstration to Bell managers was
in December of 1947.
Bell Telephone Laboratories Salutes Three New Nobel Prize Winners
Drs. John Bardeen, Walter H. Brattain and William Shockley are honored for accomplishments
at the Laboratories
(Left to right) Dr. John Bardeen*. Dr. William
Shockley*, and Dr. Walter H. Brattain, shown at Bell Telephone Laboratories in 1948
with apparatus used in the early investigations which led to the invention of the
The 1956 Nobel Prize in Physics has been awarded to the three inventors of the
transistor, for "investigations on semiconductors and the discovery of the transistor
They made their revolutionary contribution to electronics while working at Bell
Telephone Laboratories in Murray Hill, N. J. Discovery of the transistor was announced
in 1948. Bell Laboratories is proud to have been able to provide the environment
for this great achievement.
This is the second Nobel Prize awarded to Bell Telephone Laboratories scientists.
In 1937 Dr. C. J. Davisson shared a Nobel Prize for his discovery of electron diffraction.
Such achievements reflect honor on all the scientists and engineers who work
at Bell Telephone Laboratories. These men, doing research and development in a wide
variety of fields, are contributing every day to the improvement of communications
*Dr. Bardeen is now with the University of Illinois, and Dr. Shockley is with
the Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory of Beckman Instruments, Inc., Calif.
Bell Telephone Laboratories
World Center Of Communications Research And Development
Posted July 11, 2013