Temporary suspension of EU shipping, view details here.

First working transistor, 1947.

White, Ron

First working transistor, 1947.
3 3 c m
actual image size: 32cm x 25cm


Replica of the first working transistor invented in 1947 by John Bardeen, Walter Brattain and William Shockley at Bell Laboratories in the United States. They discovered that by placing two contacts close together on the surface of a crystal of germanium, through which an electric current was flowing, a device which acted as an amplifier was produced. It resembles the 'cat's whisker' detector of earlier radio sets. Transistors are semiconductors which operate as controlling devices in electric circuits. They superseded thermionic valves in fulfilling this purpose, as they operate at a lower voltage, are more compact and robust, and cheaper to make. Their increased miniaturisation has enabled faster procesing speeds in computers to be attained.

Image Details

Image Ref.

© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library

buy a print

Select size
Select finish
How many prints?

buy a framed print

buy a canvas

buy a framed canvas