Department of Physics
226 Physics Building
825 West Dickson Street
University of Arkansas
Fayetteville, AR 72701
Coolidge tubes were used by Professor Robards in the 1930s to produce x-rays. Both
tubes have tungsten filaments and tungsten targets. Note the cooling fins on the anode
on the top tube. The purple color on the bottom tube is caused by radiation damage
due to exposure to the x-rays. A tube like the one on the bottom was the workhorse
of medical x-ray machines for about 20 years. Professor Robards used this tube mostly
for service activities including taking pictures of the injuries of football players.
Close up image
A gold crucible used in Professors Sheng and Hermann laboratory in the 1980’s. A crucible
similar to this one was used by Professors Sheng and Hermann to synthesize the thallium-based
high-temperature superconductor. In the race to discover a room-temperature superconductor,
this type of superconductor with a critical temperature of 125K held the temperature
record for about five years. Superconductors can transmit electricity with zero loss
and can be used to levitate trains for high-speed travel (mag-lev trains).
The photograph shows the then- governor Bill Clinton and Professor Sheng watching
a levitated magnet. Professor Richard Anderson is demonstrating the levitation, and
his hand and face are partially visible in the photograph.
Professor Charles Richardson and his students used this apparatus during the 1980’s
and 90’s to trap and levitate single, microscopic, solid and liquid particles for
extended periods in order to study their optical and thermodynamic properties. The
principle behind the trapping is the following: A charged particle in a periodic,
inhomogeneous magnetic or electric field is pushed to a null point or line in the
field. In high energy physics this Principle of Strong Focusing is used in the design
of the large alternating-gradient-synchrotron accelerators to form the particle beam.
This is a Tungsten Target from an x-ray tube. This target (notice the spot where the
target melted) was used by Franklin R. Wintker (BS 1931, the second person to receive
a physics degree from the University) as a paperweight for a number of years. In 1995
he returned the target to the university.
The X-Ray Diffractometer was used for structure analysis and identification of powdered
samples for about 10 years starting in 1951 by Professor Sharrah and students. The
instrument has motorized scanning, a Geiger tube detector, and was used in conjunction
with a Philips X-Ray machine.
An unexposed X-Ray Film in its original metal casing.
This x-ray Tube has a water-cooled Ag target (not visible). X-rays come out from four
ports on the sides of the tube. This tube, and tubes similar to this one, were used
in a Philips X-Ray machine by Professors Sharrah and Clayton of Physics and Professor
Kruh of Chemistry. These types of tubes were used in this department for research
for about 20 years starting in 1951.
One of the burners used by Professor Gupta and his students in research on the application
of photothermal spectroscopy to combustion diagnostics. This one is a homebuilt burner
built by Allen Rose.
This is a commercial McKenna Burner which produces a flat, pancake-shaped, uniform
This spectrometer was used by Professor Raymond Hughes and his students for research
in atomic physics in the 1950’s and 60’s. It uses a large area 1200grooves/mm reflection
grating in Fastie-Ebert configuration.
Optical Spectrometer Grating
Optical Spectrometer Scanning Mechanism
For additional information, contact Raj Gupta at firstname.lastname@example.org
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