Artifact Details


Lathrop, Jay W. oral history

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Physicist, Jay W. Lathrop was born in Bangor, Maine in 1927 and grew up in Orono, Maine. He received BS, MS, and PhD degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1952 he joined the National Bureau of Standards, which later became the Army's Diamond Ordnance Fuze Laboratory. There, together with James Nall, he worked on transistor fabrication techniques to enable miniaturization of solid-state circuits for the Department of Defense. In 1947 they presented the first paper on using photographic techniques in the fabrication of transistors and coined the term 'photolithography' to describe the process.

In 1958 Lathrop joined Texas Instruments (TI) in Dallas, Texas where he worked on integrated circuits with, among others, Jack Kilby, primarily as a member of TI's Research and Development Lab. He joined Clemson University as a professor of electrical engineering in 1968, where he was instrumental in establishing a well-respected semiconductor engineering curriculum. He retired from Clemson in 1989.

In this oral history, Dr. Lathrop also discusses the contributions of many of his fellow pioneers in the semiconductor industry and the differences between working in industry vs. academia.




Lathrop, Jay W., Interviewee
Remacle, Rosemary, Interviewer


Computer History Museum

Place of Publication

Mountain View, California


27 p.




Lathrop, Jay; semiconductor history; Buckbee-Mears; Clemson University; Diamond Ordnance Fuze Laboratories (DOFL); Fairchild Camera and Instrument Corporation; Motorola; National Bureau of Standards; Texas Instruments, Inc. (TI); Adcock, Willis; Haggerty, Pat; Kilby, Jack; Nall, Jim; Noyce, Robert (Bob); Phipps, Charles; Shepherd, Mark; Teal, Gordon; fuzes; Germanium; masks; photolithography; planar circuits; planar process; resist; semiconductor; silicon; silicon crystals - formation; silicon wafers; silicon technology; transistors; transistor fabrication techniques; wafers

Collection Title

Oral history collection

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