The Lilienfeld transistor, and evidence of a Bell Labs coverup

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Bill Beaty

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Oct 31, 2006, 11:20:14 PM10/31/06
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Currently the concensus is that J. E. Lilienfeld's transistors of 1926
were never built, and could not have worked. But every time I read
stuff about Lilienfeld, the hair on the back of my neck stands right
up. My gut feeling has always been that something is wrong. I'm led
to ask, what evidence is this concensus about Lilienfeld based?

In 1981 the semiconductor physicist H. E. Stockman said "Lilienfeld
demonstrated his remarkable tubeless radio receiver on many occasions,
but God help a fellow who at that time threatened the reign of the
tube." See Bell Labs Memorial: Who really invented the transistor?,
starting at "Oscillating Crystals":
http://www.bellsystemmemorial.com/belllabs_transistor1.html

And below is a paper which details some history of the laboratory
testing of Lilienfeld's patent claims by others: The Other Transistor:
early history of the MOSFET See pp235-236:
http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpls/abs_all.jsp?arnumber=730824

Briefly:

In 1964 a physicist V. Bottom asked in Physics Today magazine whether
Lilienfeld's transistors worked, and J. B. Johnson of Bell Labs
responded saying that he'd tested them and they didn't.

This then is probably the origin of the story that Lilienfeld never had
any working hardware. An apparently trustworthy physicist (well known,
of Johnson Noise fame) said so.

Then in 1995 R. G. Arns found a 1948 Bell Labs patent deposition by
Johnson which said the opposite: that Bell Labs back then had a project
to test Lilienfeld's transistors, and before Johnson took over the
project, Shockely and Pearson had built a variation of Lilienfeld's
aluminum oxide MOSFET from his patent and found only an 11% modulation
index, but that "useful power output is substantial" ( ! ) And then
they published a paper about this result. ( !! ) After
Shockley/Pearson's success, Johnson had tested the other two Lilienfeld
patents and was unable to replicate them ...so Johnson was only
dishonest by omission, by covering up the fact that Bell Labs well knew
that Lilienfeld had something real. Between these times B. Crawford in
1991 built successful but unstable Lilienfeld MOSFETs as his MS
dissertation, and saw evidence that Lilienfeld must have built similar
devices. In 1995 J. Ross built stable Lilienfeld MOSFETs. In addition
to all this, a 1934 patent by Oskar Heil exists for another thin-film
MOSFET.

The author makes very telling statements about the honesty of these
physicists:

"Published scientific, technical, and historical papers
by these Bell scientists never mention either Lilienfeld's or
Heil's prior work."

"Why ... did Bell Laboratories personnel fail to
acknowledge the earlier work of persons such as
Lilienfeld and Heil? None of the Bell publications on
transistors carries a reference to their work, not even
the 1948 paper in which Shockley and Pearson
demonstrated the field-effect experimentally. We also
have J. B. Johnson's 1964 public response to Virgil
Bottom compared to the admission contained in his
1949 affidavit filed in support of patent proceedings: the
1964 statement, by failing to mention Shockley and
Pearson's 1948 confirmation of Lilienfeld's US Patent
No. 1,900,018, appears to have been deliberately
misleading. .The official history of the Bell System
electronics work mentions Lilienfeld's and Heil's
patents only in endnotes to a footnote. The footnote
speaks of earlier patents which 'date back to the 1920s'
and states that 'apparently all attempts to realise these
concepts were futile[33]. In 1988, John Bardeen finally
admitted that 'He [Lilienfeld] had the basic concept of
controlling the flow of current in a semiconductor to
make an amplifing devicee''[34]. It seems possible that
Shockley et al. had given up on the MOSFET idea
due to surface problems; otherwise the admission, in
Johnson's affidavit, that the Shockley and Pearson
experiment corresponded to Lilienfeld's patent, would
not have been so easy. It is also likely that they were
silent and/or dismissive in their own publications and
utterances in order to bolster their patent applications
and to minimise challenges to their priority."

One is led to wonder what the 1956 Nobel prize committee would have
thought had they known that Lilienfeld had built a functioning
pre-1940 transistor radio, and that Shockley had avoided referencing
Lilienfeld's work in Shockley's 1948 paper announcing that Lilienfeld's
FET transistors gave substantial gain.

The three Lilienfeld patents:

1,745,175 filed 1926, granted 1930
1,877,140 filed 1928, granted 1932
1,900,018 filed 1928, granted 1933
See US Patent Search: http://patft.uspto.gov/netahtml/PTO/srchnum.htm


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Don Bowey

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Nov 1, 2006, 10:01:42 AM11/1/06
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On 10/31/06 8:20 PM, in article
1162354814....@h48g2000cwc.googlegroups.com, "Bill Beaty"
<bi...@eskimo.com> wrote:

Please don't post this type of garbage spam on the SED and SEB newsboards.
It's your choice for posting on the others if you wish to let the world know
you're an idiot.


RST Engineering (jw)

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Nov 1, 2006, 11:17:49 AM11/1/06
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Talk about an idiot ... quoting an entire long article for a three line
response.

Jim

"Don Bowey" <dbo...@comcast.net> wrote in message
news:C16DF6D6.4A65A%dbo...@comcast.net...

Don Bowey

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Nov 1, 2006, 11:57:15 AM11/1/06
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On 11/1/06 8:17 AM, in article ZM32h.4$SU3....@news.sisna.com, "RST
Engineering (jw)" <j...@rstengineering.com> wrote:

(snip)

I should have top posted to save you any effort.

William R. Frensley

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Nov 1, 2006, 12:31:51 PM11/1/06
to
Bill Beaty wrote:
> Currently the concensus is that J. E. Lilienfeld's transistors of 1926
> were never built, and could not have worked. But every time I read
.....

>
> One is led to wonder what the 1956 Nobel prize committee would have
> thought had they known that Lilienfeld had built a functioning
> pre-1940 transistor radio, and that Shockley had avoided referencing
> Lilienfeld's work in Shockley's 1948 paper announcing that Lilienfeld's
> FET transistors gave substantial gain.
>
If you look carefully at the Nobel citation, you find that the prize was
awarded "for the discovery of the transistor effect." That meant, during
the 1950's, quite specifically the long lifetime and relatively free motion
of minority carriers in indirect-bandgap semiconductors such as Si and Ge.
The prize was not awarded for the invention of the transistor. It seems that
the Nobel committee was not inclined to award the prize for inventions until
1960 (the invention of the bubble chamber).

The post is an interesting pointer to parts of the history. NIH was certainly
an element of the Bell Labs culture. However, note that a functioning radio
(I presume that means a receiver) does not imply an active, gain-producing
device. A rectifying detector is all that is required*. The true test is a
self-sustaining oscillator, as the Bell Labs group certainly recognized. John
Bardeen kept an audio oscillator made from an early point contact transistor and
was proud to demonstrate it as late as the early 1980s.

While the field-effect transistor is now obviously the right way to do
electronics, it is also now clear that the technology had to pass through
the bipolar phase, to simply generate enough income to pay for the technological
development that made FET technology (MOS, J, or MeS) feasible.

* There was an educational "transistor radio" kit sold not too long after the
Regency transistor radio came out. My dad bought one and we assembled it (I was
about 7 at the time). I found it again a few years ago; it had a coil antenna,
tuning capacitor, crystal earphone, and a couple of other miscellaneous caps,
but no battery. It was obviously a classic crystal radio which used the E-B
junction of an alloyed Ge transistor as the detector and probably left the
collector open.

- Bill Frensley

John Fields

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Nov 1, 2006, 12:44:28 PM11/1/06
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On Wed, 01 Nov 2006 07:01:42 -0800, Don Bowey <dbo...@comcast.net>
wrote:

---
I disagree.

In the first place it's certainly _not_ SPAM, and in the second it's
infinitely more on topic than the "Jihad needs scientists" thread.

In the third place, what makes you think Beaty's an idiot?


--
JF

Tom Bruhns

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Nov 1, 2006, 1:01:54 PM11/1/06
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John Fields wrote:
> On Wed, 01 Nov 2006 07:01:42 -0800, Don Bowey <dbo...@comcast.net>
> wrote:
...

> >
> >Please don't post this type of garbage spam on the SED and SEB newsboards.
> >It's your choice for posting on the others if you wish to let the world know
> >you're an idiot.
>
> ---
> I disagree.
>
> In the first place it's certainly _not_ SPAM, and in the second it's
> infinitely more on topic than the "Jihad needs scientists" thread.
>
> In the third place, what makes you think Beaty's an idiot?
>
>
> --
> JF
Yes, indeed, John. I found the article that Beaty posted to be quite
interesting. It might have been more appropriate for a
sci.electronics.history group, but lacking such a group, this (s.e.d.)
seems quite a reasonable place to post it.

Cheers,
Tom

a7yvm1...@netzero.com

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Nov 1, 2006, 1:25:14 PM11/1/06
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FOOT APPLY DIRECTLY IN MOUTH
FOOT APPLY DIRECTLY IN MOUTH
FOOT APPLY DIRECTLY IN MOUTH

Michael A. Terrell

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Nov 1, 2006, 2:49:46 PM11/1/06
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The transistors could have been rejects that had open collectors.
They would have got them cheap, or free.


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Member of DAV #85.

Michael A. Terrell
Central Florida

Bill Beaty

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Nov 1, 2006, 4:57:08 PM11/1/06
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William R. Frensley wrote:

> If you look carefully at the Nobel citation, you find that the prize was
> awarded "for the discovery of the transistor effect."

Certainly. But the FET also has a "transistor effect," and it dates
from 1925.

I'm mostly speculating on what might have happened had the Nobel
Committee been aware of the Lilienfeld story, or at least aware of the
references that Shockley was apparently concealing at the time.
Perhaps Lilienfeld (who was still alive in 1956) would have had a
share. Or perhaps not, if the Prize involved exclusively
semiconductor theory (which Lilienfeld did not have.) There is both a
BJT "transistor effect" and an FET "transistor effect," and Lilienfeld
had discovered the latter and developed working devices. (Note that
Lilienfeld was a high-vacuum physicst, and also the devloper of the
modern electrolytic cap.)

In any case, this all appears to be a story of what happens when the
dishonesty of businesses and the conflicts of interest play a part in
physics research. Otherwise honorable scientists turn all weasley,
and simple history is manipulated and distorted by the marketing
department.

> The post is an interesting pointer to parts of the history. NIH was certainly
> an element of the Bell Labs culture. However, note that a functioning radio
> (I presume that means a receiver) does not imply an active, gain-producing
> device.

A crystal radio? Uh... that's silly. Think about it: if Lilienfeld
merely built a standard crystal radio in 1930 or thereabouts, it makes
absolutely no sense that he'd "show it around," or that Stockman would
include such a story in his review-letter pertaining to amplification
by crystals durnig pre-Bell-labs history. You honestly think that
Stockman was talking about a crystal detector hooked to headphones?
Really? Also, I suspect that you didn't bother to check out those
patents. One of Lilienfeld's figures depicts a modern transistor
radio: a detector with multi-stage transistor amplifier connected to a
loudspeaker.

I guess it boils down to two possibilities: whether Shockley and
Johnson were liars, or whether Lilienfeld the liar. The legal
deposition shows that Johnson committed a lie of omission in Physics
Today, while Shockley et. al. committed a scientific sin: carefully
avoiding any reference to the physicist whose earlier work they were
replicating. Their actions are perfectly acceptable in the world of
business and politics, but in physics such deceptive tactics are the
very opposite of science and are quite disgusting.


> A rectifying detector is all that is required*. The true test is a
> self-sustaining oscillator, as the Bell Labs group certainly recognized.

Irrelevant, since self-sustaining crystal oscillators were known long
before transistors. So were gain-producing crystal circuits. See
"crystadyne" and the Lennyr website with zinc oxide amplifiers. These
were 2-wire parametric amplifiers, not transistors. Lilienfeld's
devices were 3-lead MOSFETS built by thin-film deposition.


> While the field-effect transistor is now obviously the right way to do
> electronics, it is also now clear that the technology had to pass through
> the bipolar phase, to simply generate enough income to pay for the technological
> development that made FET technology (MOS, J, or MeS) feasible.

I think you have it backwards. The above is shown false if the
following is true: if Lilienfeld had actually built stable
gain-producing devices before 1930, and if Bell Labs *intentionally*
steered away from FETs *because* they could not be protected by
patents; instead investing in undeveloped BJT technology rather than
picking up the trail of Lilienfeld's already-developed thin-film
devices.

There is no reason why a company can't make scads money selling
non-tube miniature amplifiers built from a public domain invention.
Patents only let them sue competitors, as well as giving them major
propaganda cred for "inventing THE transistor" rather than merely
"popularizing Lilienfeld's device." If really interested, read those
references. The Bell Labs deposition apparently states that Lilienfeld
FETs were sucessfully built by Shockley and produced significant gain
...and that nearly all of Bell Labs' FET patent claims were then shot
down because of Lilienfeld's prior art already in the public domain.
Fewer of their BJT claims were shot down by Lilienfeld's device.

On the other hand, if Bell Labs had simply started selling Lilienfeld
public-domain MOSFETs, Shockley and crew might have been out of a job,
and today we might be missing a very major chunk of solid state theory.
Or perhaps it the theory would have been developed by honest
physicists outside Bell Labs, not by those whose conflict of interest
(read profit motive) causes them to intentionally deceive fellow
scientists.

The Phantom

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Nov 1, 2006, 6:47:25 PM11/1/06
to
On 1 Nov 2006 13:57:08 -0800, "Bill Beaty" <bi...@eskimo.com> wrote:

>William R. Frensley wrote:
>
>> If you look carefully at the Nobel citation, you find that the prize was
>> awarded "for the discovery of the transistor effect."
>
>Certainly. But the FET also has a "transistor effect," and it dates
>from 1925.

I don't think it's generally considered a "transistor effect"; that's why
the letters "FE" (Field Effect) in the name FET are there. The Bell labs
folks came up with the name "transistor" (transfer resistor), and they
meant specifically the sort of action that takes place in a BJT. They were
the first to realize the significance of minority carriers in
semiconductors. FET's don't use a minority carrier effect.

Bill Beaty

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Nov 1, 2006, 7:39:30 PM11/1/06
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The Phantom wrote:
>
> I don't think it's generally considered a "transistor effect"; that's why
> the letters "FE" (Field Effect) in the name FET are there. The Bell labs
> folks came up with the name "transistor" (transfer resistor), and they
> meant specifically the sort of action that takes place in a BJT. They were
> the first to realize the significance of minority carriers in
> semiconductors. FET's don't use a minority carrier effect.

Good point.

Separate topic: I'd always wondered if nobody had ever bothered to
try building a Lilienfeld MOSFET. Some variants should be easily
achievable
by hobbyists. But this 1995 article notes two recent successful
attempts
(I mean besides Shockley's apparent success in 1948.)

So now I can't be first. Rats. (Not that I actually would have,
seeing my
own level of ambition!)

Mike Monett

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Nov 1, 2006, 8:31:04 PM11/1/06
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"Bill Beaty" <bi...@eskimo.com> wrote:

> Separate topic: I'd always wondered if nobody had ever bothered to
> try building a Lilienfeld MOSFET. Some variants should be easily
> achievable by hobbyists. But this 1995 article notes two recent
> successful attempts (I mean besides Shockley's apparent success in
> 1948.)

> So now I can't be first. Rats. (Not that I actually would have,
> seeing my own level of ambition!)

> William J. Beaty Research Engineer


> be...@chem.washington.edu UW Chem Dept, Bagley Hall RM74
> bi...@eskimo.com Box 351700, Seattle, WA 98195-1700
> ph425-222-5066 http//staff.washington.edu/wbeaty/

Very interesting thread. Thanks for posting.

BTW, you might want to add a colon to your url. It works better as

http://staff.washington.edu/wbeaty/

Regards,

Mike Monett

Antiviral, Antibacterial Silver Solution:
http://silversol.freewebpage.org/index.htm
SPICE Analysis of Crystal Oscillators:
http://silversol.freewebpage.org/spice/xtal/clapp.htm
Noise-Rejecting Wideband Sampler:
http://www3.sympatico.ca/add.automation/sampler/intro.htm

Robert Baer

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Nov 2, 2006, 3:45:54 AM11/2/06
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Excuse me!
He correctly and accurately disclosed the *three* patents by
Lilienfeld; reading them clearly shows that Lilienfeld knew what he was
doing.
Now if you want to ignore facts, tough tissue paper!

Robert Baer

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Nov 2, 2006, 3:56:56 AM11/2/06
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Bill Beaty wrote:

Has anyone mentioned that around that time, both before, during and
after Lilienfeld, that some radio amateurs, not being rich enough to
afford a tube, fiddled with point contactS (yes, plural) on crystals?
Various configurations were used, including pressure on one or more
of the contacts, as well as various *biasing* schemes.
And there wer claims of gain . . but . . reproducibility was sadly
lacking.
Adding true and verified stories with dates would enrich the history!

Tom Potter

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Nov 2, 2006, 7:39:51 AM11/2/06
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"Bill Beaty" <bi...@eskimo.com> wrote in message
news:1162354814....@h48g2000cwc.googlegroups.com...

As I pointed out in the 2004 post referenced below,
AT&T had a need for millions of audio amplifiers,
and as it would have cost them billions of dollars
if they had engineered transistors into their equipment earlier,
they conveniently waited until the Lilienfeld
patents expired before they had Bell Labs "invent"
the transistor.

http://groups.google.com/group/sci.physics.relativity/msg/d3f79dcc3a9a3d03?hl=en&

And a can be seen from the patents,
contrary to the claims of the Q.M. and S.R. Zombies,
Q.M. and S.R. played no role in the invention of transistors.

And as can be seen by the notebooks of the so-called
Bell Labs "inventors" they fumbled their way
into getting their point contact transistor to work,
and no magical Q.M. computations were involved.

--
Tom Potter
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Homer J Simpson

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Nov 2, 2006, 10:52:43 AM11/2/06
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"Robert Baer" <rober...@earthlink.net> wrote in message
news:6fi2h.1174$0r....@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...

> Excuse me!
> He correctly and accurately disclosed the *three* patents by Lilienfeld;
> reading them clearly shows that Lilienfeld knew what he was doing.
> Now if you want to ignore facts, tough tissue paper!

But did you have to requote it all?


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YD

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Nov 2, 2006, 11:13:35 AM11/2/06
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Late at night, by candle light, "Bill Beaty" <bi...@eskimo.com> penned
this immortal opus:

>
>The Phantom wrote:
>>
>> I don't think it's generally considered a "transistor effect"; that's why
>> the letters "FE" (Field Effect) in the name FET are there. The Bell labs
>> folks came up with the name "transistor" (transfer resistor), and they
>> meant specifically the sort of action that takes place in a BJT. They were
>> the first to realize the significance of minority carriers in
>> semiconductors. FET's don't use a minority carrier effect.
>
>Good point.
>
>Separate topic: I'd always wondered if nobody had ever bothered to
>try building a Lilienfeld MOSFET. Some variants should be easily
>achievable
>by hobbyists. But this 1995 article notes two recent successful
>attempts
>(I mean besides Shockley's apparent success in 1948.)
>
>So now I can't be first. Rats. (Not that I actually would have,
>seeing my
>own level of ambition!)
>

I vaguely recall an Amateur Scientist article from the mid-70s that
involved baking some metal oxide on glass slides using a strip of
aluminum as the gate. Didn't seem very useful but nice for a science
fair or something.

- YD.

--
Remove HAT if replying by mail.

Glenn Møller-Holst

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Nov 2, 2006, 11:46:07 AM11/2/06
to
Robert Baer wrote:
...

> Has anyone mentioned that around that time, both before, during and
> after Lilienfeld, that some radio amateurs, not being rich enough to
> afford a tube, fiddled with point contactS (yes, plural) on crystals?
> Various configurations were used, including pressure on one or more of
> the contacts, as well as various *biasing* schemes.
> And there wer claims of gain . . but . . reproducibility was sadly
> lacking.
> Adding true and verified stories with dates would enrich the history!

Hi Robert

Maybe they were negative differential resistance devices (tunnel diode
effect before they were "invented")?:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negative_resistance
http://da.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negativ_differentiel_modstand
Quote: "...
Cristadyne: Semiconductor archaeology or tribute to unknown precursors:
http://www.a-reny.com/iexplorer/cristadyne.html
Quote: "...In 1923, Oleg Losev [O. V. Lossev, Lossew] (1903-1942) ( See
link below ) managed to make a high frequency generator using such a
detector. But it was polarized. This indicates that this diode had a
characteristic curve in which a negative slope was present. And this
makes one think of the tunnel effect diode invented a half a century
later...These layouts where part of what one called CRYSTADYNE [or
Cristadyne, Crystodyne ] systems. But in those days, the technical
performance and industrial ease of the new increasing valve technology
made these layouts to be ignored, and then forgotten..."
..."

-

Today radio amateurs also make home made tunnel diode amplifiers and
oscillators:

By Nyle Steiner K7NS 2001:
Zinc Negative Resistance RF Amplifier for Crystal Sets and Regenerative
Receivers Uses No Tubes or Transistors:
http://home.earthlink.net/~lenyr/znrfamp2.htm
http://home.earthlink.net/~lenyr/zincosc.htm

-

More nostalgic stuff:

The Wireless World and Radio Review. October 1, 1924 and October 8,
1924: "The Crystal As A Generator And Amplifier" by Victor Gabel.

Radio News, September, 1924, pages 294-295, 431: The Crystodyne Principle:
http://earlyradiohistory.us/1924cry.htm

Radio News, September, 1924, page 291: A Sensational Radio Invention
By HUGO GERNSBACK:
http://earlyradiohistory.us/1924sens.htm

/Glenn

bi...@eskimo.com

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Nov 2, 2006, 3:21:45 PM11/2/06
to
Robert Baer wrote:
> Has anyone mentioned that around that time, both before, during and
> after Lilienfeld, that some radio amateurs, not being rich enough to
> afford a tube, fiddled with point contactS (yes, plural) on crystals?

Yep! Below is a physics paper about making Galena point-contact
transistors. The researchers found that they could get some gain only
if they used a freshly-cleaved Galena surface, some very sharp metal
point-contacts, and most importantly, 0.05mm electrode spacing (that's
0.002") or preferably a spacing below .01mm (or .0004").

Crystal Triode Action in Lead Sulphide,
P. C. Banbury, H.A. Gebbie, C. A. Hogarth
Proc. Conf. Semi-conducting Materials pp78-86.
H.K. Henisch (ed), Butterworth's sci pub LTD 1951.

The required small spacing is indirect evidence that early hobbyists
weren't seeing a bipolar transistor effect. Instead they were
probably creating a resistive divider inside the material which biased
their diodes and reduced or removed the turn-on voltage. That, or they
were creating parametric amplifiers (based on the negative resistance
operating regime.)

On the other hand, here is the website of H. P. Friedrichs, AC7ZL, with
photos of home-built transistors, from his book "Instruments of
Amplification."

Home built transistors (and Triode vac tubes)
http://www.hpfriedrichs.com/bks-ioa-gallery2.htm

Buy that book from Lindsay:

Instruments of Amplification
http://www.lindsaybks.com/bks7/finstr/index.html

> Various configurations were used, including pressure on one or more
> of the contacts, as well as various *biasing* schemes.
> And there wer claims of gain . . but . . reproducibility was sadly
> lacking.
> Adding true and verified stories with dates would enrich the history!

((((((((((((((((((((((( ( ( (o) ) ) )))))))))))))))))))))))
William J. Beaty Research Engineer
be...@chem.washington.edu UW Chem Dept, Bagley Hall RM74
bi...@eskimo.com Box 351700, Seattle, WA 98195-1700

ph425-222-5066 http://staff.washington.edu/wbeaty/

JeffM

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Nov 2, 2006, 4:43:14 PM11/2/06
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Homer J Simpson wrote:
> But did you have to requote it all?
> --
> ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
> + Required crap appended to avoid restrictions imposed by brain +
> + damaged idiots.
> +
> + Server Response: '441 Posting Failed (Rejected by POST filter)', +
> + Port: 119, Secure(SSL): No, Server Error: 441,
> +
> + Error Number: 0x800CCCA9
> +
> ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++


SET YOUR SIG BACK TO NORMAL.
http://groups.google.com/groups/search?q=author:Homer-J-Simpson+Required-crap-appended&scoring=d

bi...@eskimo.com

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Nov 2, 2006, 5:32:14 PM11/2/06
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Tom Potter wrote:

> And a can be seen from the patents,
> contrary to the claims of the Q.M. and S.R. Zombies,
> Q.M. and S.R. played no role in the invention of transistors.

Hmmmm. Maybe someone should see whether quantum-dot devices can be
explained in semiclassical terms, or by using SED.

People who expose to doubt only their opponents' position would make
good politicians. But those who dare to doubt both the contents of
their textbooks as well as their own long-held knowledge, ah, the
should consider a career in the sciences.

Now if you want to expose QM to skepticism, not only can you read
Einstein, but also go and check out Dr. Willis Lamb of "Lamb Shift"
fame. At one point he had a running bet with other physicists about
the non-existence of EM quanta. He was betting that photons would turn
out to be a delusion. See:

Anti-Photon
http://www.springerlink.com/content/h16g2307204h5654/

And also Lamb's book:

Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics
http://www.rintonpress.com/books/wlamb.html


((((((((((((((((((((((( ( ( (o) ) ) )))))))))))))))))))))))
William J. Beaty Research Engineer
be...@chem.washington.edu UW Chem Dept, Bagley Hall RM74
bi...@eskimo.com Box 351700, Seattle, WA 98195-1700

ph425-222-5066 http://staff.washington.edu/wbeaty/

William R. Frensley

unread,
Nov 2, 2006, 5:33:03 PM11/2/06
to
Tom Potter wrote:
........

> And a can be seen from the patents,
> contrary to the claims of the Q.M. and S.R. Zombies,
> Q.M. and S.R. played no role in the invention of transistors.
>
> And as can be seen by the notebooks of the so-called
> Bell Labs "inventors" they fumbled their way
> into getting their point contact transistor to work,
> and no magical Q.M. computations were involved.
>
No quantum mechanical "computations" were required, but the
insight provided by band theory was essential to understanding
and interpreting the experimental data that led to working devices.
What passed for theory in that era was (of necessity) remarkably
qualitative, with lots of attention to highly oversimplified (but
solvable) models, then argument by analogy.

What I find most interesting about the Lilienfeld patents is the
complete confusion about conduction mechanisms in solids. His
concepts are apparently drawn mostly from ionic conduction in
aqueous solutions. Of course, this should not be surprising, since
that was the only halfway accurate model of conduction available
until 1928 (the date of the last application) with the publication
of Felix Bloch's paper.

In contrast the semiconductor researchers in the late 1930s and 1940s
(not just at Bell Labs) had a conceptual framework which allowed them
to sort out the difference between conduction due to a large density of
not-especially-mobile charges (metals) from that of small densities of
highly mobile charges (semiconductors). The later are what one needs
to make an active device (current valve). The fact that the charge carriers
that move most easily between the material then in use (germanium) and
metallic contacts are positively charged (the holes) led them to percieve
that the quantum insights were particularly crucial.

- Bill Frensley


Homer J Simpson

unread,
Nov 2, 2006, 8:49:28 PM11/2/06
to

"JeffM" <jef...@email.com> wrote in message
news:1162503794.8...@b28g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...

> SET YOUR SIG BACK TO NORMAL.

Can't.

tdp...@gmail.com

unread,
Nov 2, 2006, 10:14:58 PM11/2/06
to

bi...@eskimo.com wrote:
> Tom Potter wrote:
>
> > And a can be seen from the patents,
> > contrary to the claims of the Q.M. and S.R. Zombies,
> > Q.M. and S.R. played no role in the invention of transistors.
>
> Hmmmm. Maybe someone should see whether quantum-dot devices can be
> explained in semiclassical terms, or by using SED.
>
> People who expose to doubt only their opponents' position would make
> good politicians. But those who dare to doubt both the contents of
> their textbooks as well as their own long-held knowledge, ah, the
> should consider a career in the sciences.
>
> Now if you want to expose QM to skepticism, not only can you read
> Einstein, but also go and check out Dr. Willis Lamb of "Lamb Shift"
> fame. At one point he had a running bet with other physicists about
> the non-existence of EM quanta. He was betting that photons would turn
> out to be a delusion. See:
>
> Anti-Photon
> http://www.springerlink.com/content/h16g2307204h5654/

It is interesting to see that in response to my statement:


"Q.M. and S.R. played no role in the invention of transistors."

William J. Beaty tries to create a strawman with his statement:


"Hmmmm. Maybe someone should see whether quantum-dot devices can be
explained in semiclassical terms, or by using SED."

or else he wrongly thinks that quantum-dot technology preceded
Lilienfeld's "invention" of the transistor.

I must also point out that "explaining" an effect,
or fitting it into some model,
folows the observation of the effect.

It is also interesting to see that William J. Beaty
asserts that EM is quanta,
rather than the fact that high Q resonant systems, like atoms,
absorb action only at resonance.

In other words, massive systems are quantum
by virtue of their resonance and high Q,
and they will absorb action at that frequency.

For example, if EM were quanta,
there would be no Doppler effect.

Also note that a high Q, resonant (Quantum) system can be brought into
resonance with an off frequency, non-quantum, EM wave
with the appropriate relative velocity.

tdp...@gmail.com

unread,
Nov 2, 2006, 10:26:58 PM11/2/06
to

As I stated:
The "Bell Labs "inventors" fumbled their way


into getting their point contact transistor to work,

and no magical Q.M. computations were involved.",
nor were "quantum insights particularly crucial".

If you read the notebooks you will see that this is true.

And the fact of the matter is,
that what lead to Bell Lab's reinvention of the transistor
was not Quantum Mechanics,
but was Edison's invention of the "Edison Effect",
Deforest's invention of the triode,
and Lilienfeld's invention of the transistor
about twenty years before Bell Lab's reinvented"
the point contact transistor,
conveniently AFTER Lilienfeld's patent's expired.

If Bell Labs had "invented" the transistor
a few years earlier, they would have had to pay
Lilienfeld billions of dollars, and Lilienfeld, not AT&T
would have been able to license the technology
to T.I., Fairchild, RCA, etc.

Robert Baer

unread,
Nov 3, 2006, 12:14:47 AM11/3/06
to
Glenn Møller-Holst wrote:

Doubtful.
From the descriptions i heard about (Nth source), it appears that
these were all point-contact types and the schemes were to get the
fields of those contacts close together for reasonable gain.

Robert Baer

unread,
Nov 3, 2006, 12:16:47 AM11/3/06
to
bi...@eskimo.com wrote:

Thank you very much for the additions!

Don Bowey

unread,
Nov 8, 2006, 5:54:25 PM11/8/06
to
On 11/1/06 9:44 AM, in article b0nhk2p30851ka9fp...@4ax.com,
"John Fields" <jfi...@austininstruments.com> wrote:

OK! Noted - you disagree.

The title: "The Lilienfeld transistor, and evidence of a Bell Labs coverup"
tells me it's junk.

The title and and the lack of any solid proofs of the charge, except for
certain feelings in the back of his neck, etc., make me think he is in about
the same class as whosit 2020. If this is his Freshman English Writing
expository project, I doubt he passed.

IMO this newsgroup has an overload of off-topic material, but at least most
of it is marked OT.


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