The War Years and Growth



Total employment at the Laboratory jumped from 396 in 1941 to 4400 in 1946, expenditures from $1.7 million to $13.7 million, the number of buildings from 23 to 67, and the number of projects from 200 to about 900. Aerial photograph taken in 1941 During WWII, scientific activities necessarily were concentrated almost entirely on applied research. New electronics equipment - radio, radar, sonar - was developed. Countermeasures were devised. New lubricants were produced, as were antifouling paints, luminous identification tapes, and a sea marker to help save survivors of disasters at sea. A thermal diffusion process was conceived and used to supply some of the 235U isotope needed for one of the first atomic bombs. Also, many new devices that developed from booming wartime industry were type tested and then certified as reliable for the Fleet.


Link to Highlights of NRL's First 75 Years

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