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Identity statement

Reference code(s)
GB0099 KCLMA Lewis W B
LEWIS, Dr Wilfrid Bennett (1908-1987)
Level of description
Collection (fonds)
Extent and medium of the unit of description (quantity, bulk, or size)
0.02 cubic metres (2 boxes)


Name of creator(s)
Lewis, Wilfrid Bennett, 1908-1987, physicist
Administrative / Biographical history

Born, 1908; educated at Haileybury College, Hertfordshire, and Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University; research in radioactivity and nuclear physics, Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge, 1930-1939; University Demonstrator in Physics, 1934; Research Fellowship, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University, 1934-1940; University Lecturer in Physics, 1937; seconded, as Senior Scientific Officer, to Air Ministry Research Establishment, Bawdsey Manor, Suffolk, 1939; establishment moved to Dundee and then to Worth Matravers, Dorset; work on radar for Air Ministry/Ministry of Supply at the Telecommunications Research Establishment, Great Malvern, Worcestershire, 1942-1946; Fellow of the Royal Society, 1945; Chief Superintendent, Telecommunications Research Establishment, Ministry of Aircraft Production, 1945-1946; awarded CBE, 1946; Director of Division of Atomic Energy Research, National Research Council of Canada, 1946-1952; Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, 1952; Vice President, Research and Development, Atomic Energy of Canada Limited, 1952-1963; Canadian Representative, UN Scientific Advisory Committee, 1955-1987; President, American Nuclear Society, 1961; Senior Vice President, Science, Atomic Energy of Canada Limited, 1963-1973; Companion of the Order of Canada, 1967; Canadian Association of Physicists 25th Anniversary Gold Medal, 1970; Honorary Fellow, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge; Royal Medal, Royal Society, 1972; Distinguished Professor of Science, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, 1973-1987; died, 1987. Publications include: Electrical counting, with special reference to counting alpha and beta particles (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1942); as joint editor with Abram Chayes, International arrangements for nuclear fuel reprocessing (Ballinger, for the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA, 1977); articles in Wireless Engineer .

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Placed in the Centre by Lewis' family in 1990.

Content & structure

Scope and content

Papers, 1940-1985, of Wilfrid Bennett Lewis, largely relating to his work on radar during World War Two and including copy of nominal roll of Air Ministry Research Establishment, Worth Matravers, 1940, giving staff details; copies of Telecommunications Research Establishment (TRE) Lists (organization charts), 1941-1944; photocopy of TRE nominal roll, May 1942, giving staff details; photograph of TRE personnel, Nov 1945; two photographs of 'Empire Scientific Conference Visit to TRE', 4 Jul 1946; correspondence between R Van de Hulst and W B Lewis and synopsis of thesis on radar history by Van de Hulst, 1981. Printed material, including scientific papers and newsletters, is largely by authors other than Lewis and comprises offprints, 1946, of W B Lewis, 'Fluctuations in Streams of Thermal Radiation' (from Proceedings of the Physical Society , vol lix, 1947) and 'Radar Receivers' (from Journal of the Institution of Electrical Engineers , vol 93, pt IIIA, no 1, 1946); TRE Memorandum L/M50/WBL: W B Lewis, 'Ultimate limits of Infrared Technique'; Physics Department (TRE) newsletters, 1950, 1952-1953, 1956-1957, 1960-1961, with publications 1957-1960; A M Uttley, The Computation of Pattern Differences', Nov 1952, TRE Gt Malvern; TRE Technical Notes nos 70, 76, 86, 91, 108-109, 114, 120-1, on topics including radar; TRE Report T 2131: W Culshaw, 'The Michelson Interferometer at Millimetre Wavelengths'; TRE Memorandum, Ref RAS/48/7: R A Smith, 'Note on the relative advantages of various types of Rectifier'; part of TRE Technical note no 52, 'Thin film resistors of the noble metals'; publications from the Physics Department, Royal Radar Establishment (RRE) Malvern, 1947-1956; RRE newsletters and research reviews, 1962, 1964-1971; Royal Signals and Radar Establishment newsletters and research reviews, 1980-1982, 1985.

Conditions of access & use

Conditions governing access

Open, subject to signature of Reader's undertaking form, and appropriate provision of two forms of identification, to include one photographic ID.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Trustees of the Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives, attention of the Director of Archive Services.

Language/scripts of material
Finding aids

Collection level description available in reading room at Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives and online at

Allied materials

Existence and location of originals
King's College London College Archives
Related units of description
Queen's University Archives, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, holds other Lewis papers. Cambridge University Library, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives, holds notebooks by Lewis (Ref: NCUACS8/1/89).

Description control

Archivist's Note
Compiled by Iain Mutch; revised by Rachel Kemsley as part of the RSLP AIM25 project. Source: Who's Who.
Rules or conventions
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

This catalogue is made available under the Open Data Commons Attribution License. This catalogue may be updated from time to time in order to reflect additional material and/or new understandings of the material.

Date(s) of descriptions
Nov 1999, Mar 2001

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  • Broadcasting technology
  • Communication technology
  • Equipment
  • Information technology
  • International conflicts
  • Measuring instruments
  • Radar
  • Scientific equipment
  • War
  • Wars (events)
  • Wireless telegraphy
  • World War Two (1939-1945)
  • World wars (events)

Personal names

  • Lewis, Wilfrid Bennett, 1908-1987, physicist
  • Lewis, Wilfrid Bennett, 1908-1987, physicist

Corporate names

  • Air Ministry Research Establishment, Worth Matravers
  • Royal Radar Establishment
  • Royal Signals and Radar Establishment
  • Telecommunications Research Establishment

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