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Dennis Gabor

Dennis GaborAKA Dénes Günszberg

Born: 5-Jun-1900
Birthplace: Budapest, Hungary
Died: 8-Feb-1979
Location of death: London, England
Cause of death: unspecified
Remains: Cremated (ashes in family's possession)

Gender: Male
Religion: Agnostic
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Physicist

Nationality: England
Executive summary: Inventor of holography

In work beginning in 1947 and continuing until 1951, British physicist Dennis Gabor invented holography, the lensless, three-dimensional system of photography. In Gabor's original holograms mercury-vapor lamps provided the necessary light, but holograms only became economically feasible and more realistic in the 1960s, with the advent of the laser and its ability to amplify the intensity of light waves. He won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1971.

He was educated in Budapest and Berlin, and made his first significant scientific contribution in 1927, while working for Siemens & Halske in Berlin — he invented the molybdenum tape seal, a key improvement to the mercury lamp, which became one of the company's most successful products. He fled the rise of the Nazis in 1933, became a British citizen in 1946, and conducted all of his subsequent work in England and America. He made noteworthy advances in communication theory, the electron microscope, high-speed oscilloscopes, physical optics, stereoscopic cinematography, and television technology. He held more than 100 patents, receiving his first when he was eleven years old, and he was a high school classmate of László Bíró, who invented the ballpoint pen.

Father: Bernát Günszberg (mining executive, changed name to Gábor in 1902)
Mother: Adrienne Gábor ("Ady")
Brother: George Gábor
Wife: Marjorie Louise Gabor (m. 1936)

    High School: Markó Street High School, Budapest (1918)
    University: Technical University of Budapest (attended, 1918-20)
    University: BS, Technical University of Berlin (1924)
    University: Dr-Ing, Technical University of Berlin (1927)
    Teacher: Physics, Imperial College London (1948-58)
    Professor: Applied Electron Physics, Imperial College London (1958-67)

    CBS Staff Scientist, CBS Laboratories (1967-79)
    British Thomson-Houston Company Research (1933-48)
    Siemens Research Engineer, Siemens & Halske AG (1927-33)
    IOP Thomas Young Medal 1967
    CMG Albert Abraham Michelson Award 1968
    Rumford Medal 1968
    Commander of the British Empire 1970
    IEEE Medal of Honor 1970
    Fernand Holweck Prize 1971
    Nobel Prize for Physics 1971
    Hungarian Academy of Sciences Foreign Member, 1964
    Royal Society 1956
    Naturalized UK Citizen 1946
    Hungarian Ancestry
    Jewish Ancestry

Author of books:
The Electron Microscope (1934)
Inventing the Future (1963)
Innovations: Scientific, Technological, and Social (1970)
The Mature Society (1972)
Proper Priorities of Science and Technology (1972)


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