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August 7, 2010 / consort3

741 and inventions

Just found out that the inventor of the 741 op-amp was a Brit, Dave Fullagar

Dave was working for Fairchild in the US at the time, so is the invention American or British?

Design analysis of the 741

More on the design and use of the 741

More background on the design of the 741

Another British invention from the same era the Liquid crystal display was by this guy:

Who was working with RRE  Malvern.  Actually the device had been invented by Williams and Heilmeyer at RCA labs, however it needed Gray’s expertise to make an acceptable device. But in typical British fashion we did not develop it commercially,  It was the Japanese who realised the value of the invention. Interesting timeline on LCDs. I was shown a working device in 1970 when I started in the electronics business but it wasn’t till 1974 that LCD wristwatches and calculators appeared.  Williams had started in 1962 so a long time to gestation! Also the switch from blue sky research to realising there were applications for liquid crystals. In 1970 the LCD would not do the temperature range required. More here on how RCA let it slip through their fingers, they do not mention George Gray!

More on Heilmeyer here: (they still do not mention Gray!

Uk goverment research 1664-2008 time line showing LCDs

This paper is a very nice summary of LCD development

Quote: “We now recognize that America’s strength was in its speed in creating new ideas and then demonstrating their feasibility. Europe’s strength was in fundamental science and synthesizing basic materials. Japan’s strength was in perfecting the implementation and moving it to mass production.” I suspect without all 3 it would not have happened.

Another invention out of RRE Malvern was the touch screen display:

Yet another British invention from an alliterative professor, Alf Adams, is the strained quantum well laser. Again not developed by the British but by Philips in Holland

Even more British electro-optical breakthroughs by yet another alliterative academic, Professor Payne

Another British invention, the EM drive by Roger Shawyer

Back to chip design geniuses and the creator of the TDA2030 Bruno Murari

Showed my daughter this blog and she thought it was geeky but not as geeky as this:

We are all geeks now

Story about another great engineer Bob Widlar


*Unusual tribute to another great analogue engineer Bob Pease, takes me back to hand laid out PCBs

Remembrances of another engineer the late great Jim Williams–5-years-later

Another useful electronics blog:

Another Analogue legend, “I’m an artist and I paint silicon.” Back to where we started analog IC design, a good website:

Reverse engineering the TL431 the most common chip you have never heard of: Great blog site BTW

Dave Fullagar moved to Silicon Valley in 1966 this guy moved there in 2013:

If you are an engineer watch out for VCs

Moores Law is 50 years old

More on Moore

🆕History of the invention of the transistor


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