Fusion Message Board

In this space, visitors are invited to post any comments, questions, or skeptical observations about Philo T. Farnsworth's contributions to the field of Nuclear Fusion research.

Subject: Another Newcomer - Thanks for Sharing Work
Date: Jan 15, 12:37 pm
Poster: John Wheeler

On Jan 15, 12:37 pm, John Wheeler wrote:

Hi! I'm ANOTHER newcomer that accidently came across this messge board while researching Farnsworth. Thanks for sharing your work - I know that it takes time and energy to do so!

I'm an ee now teaching and looking for an area to funnel my creative side. I've done a lot of circuit design, including some in H.V. area for strobes for machine vision, etc. and enjoy physics. Many areas of physics interest me, however, I've learned that just because I can do something doesn't mean that I should.

I was researching Farnsworth because I have owned several small companies that designed and manufactured televison products and specialized systems (underwater tv, communications, lighting, etc.). In addition to having studied television history in the past, I had an uncle, Charles Thornton, that worked for Farnsworth. This was the only member of our family that made a LOT of money from stock buy-outs from companies that he worked at. Unfortunately, he died several years ago. I would have loved to talk with him about the fusion aspect of Farnsworth's work.

After reading Farnsworth Chronicles, it suddenly 'clicked' why uncle Charles was hired by Farnsworth. Uncle Charles was a chemist who worked for Eastman Kodak just before WWII. He then was sent to Oakridge, TN to work on the Manhattan Project. After the war, he moved to Fort Wayne, Indiana to work for Farnsworth. He must of been fairly productive, because when ITT bought out Farnsworth in 1949, he traveled up the ranks in R & D. I remember looking at a business card in the '50s that gave his title as Director of R & D for North America & Europe for ITT. He left ITT because he knew that he would never get the President's slot. I can remember him working for the AEC, but NEVER talking about fusion. Of course, since I graduated from high school in 1963, I probably didn't bring up the subject.

I can also remember that a big technical issue at Farnsworth was the design of image storage scopes, very large screen, I believe for the government. I can remember him talking about this area for a few years. The problems appeared unsolveable, but I don't know the outcome.

I'm looking forward to calling my Aunt and discussing Uncle Charles's work at Fort Wayne and after the ITT buy-out.

Thanks again for the posts.

John Wheeler