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Vertical Dewar with Flash Lamp


The object consists of an aluminum stand in which a vacuum tube is placed, There is an aluminum container above the tube, supported by three aluminum rods, containing a cylindrical glass funnel extending downwards into the vacuum tube, for funneling cryogenic liquid. The tube itself contains a series of small metal components and inner tubing for the dispersal of conductive gases (i.e. hydrogen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide etc.). A small tube, wound with thin copper wire, snakes around the outside of the inner tube.
The apparatus appears to be largely put together in the lab.

[Needs to be in a separate entry: The second tube is secured to a case made from wood. A piece of string is tied around the tube, so as to prevent the accidental emission of gases from inside the bulb. The tube itself contains a semiconductor and a ring made from copper.]

Accession Number:

Alternative Name: Dewar

Primary Materials:

Wood, Glass, Plastic, Steel, Copper, Aluminum.


Etching on the glass: “General Electric FT – 524”; below, also etched: 65.
Some nondescript, partly faded lettering under the base.

Dimensions (cm):

Overall Height: 36.5 cm; width of square base: 20 cm; diameter of round base: 7.5 cm; height of the vacuum tube: 19 cm; height of cylindrical container: 11.5 cm; diameter of cylindrical container: 8.9 cm


[Utilized for exciting contained gases via high-power RF (radio frequency) signals for the purposes of spectrometric readings.]

Used in the development of the laser. Cryogenic liquid is poured into the inner tube. The flash lamp, comprised of the small outer tube traversed by the copper wire, produces a flash which fluoresces the liquid, whose spectrum is (presumably) measured separately by a spectrometer.


[Excellent. Correspondence with Dr. Stephen Morris suggests that they have never been used, based on the fact that they are still in their original packaging. (some wooden supports, etc.)]

Good condition. Some scratching, mild oxidation, and corrosion material.

Associated Instruments: 633


Some components from General Electric; likely built in physics department.

Date of Manufacture: 1965 (?)


From a cache of instruments gathered by Dr. Stephen Morris at the Department of Physics. This one is from the office of Boris Stoicheff (1924-2011), Department of Physics, University of Toronto. Perhaps originally from the NRC.

Additional Information and References:

Dr. Stephen Morris (pers. correspondence)

Historical Notes:

Probably from the ‘50s, early ‘60s, when they were doing their famous work on molecular spectroscopy.

Stoicheff and his colleague Hertzberg did important work on the spectroscopy of cold gases with apparatus such as this. Their research contributed to the development of the laser, and has implications for astronomy (for instance, determining which molecules are present in gas clouds in space).


  • Donated to UTSIC