Cosslett was born in Cirencester in June 1908, the son of Edgar William Cosslett and Anne Cosslett (née Williams). He was awarded a PhD at Bristol University in 1932, and was then appointed a Research Fellow at Bristol, 1932-5; Lecturer in Science, Faraday House, London, 1935-9; research (part-time) at Birkbeck College, London, 1936-9; Keddey-Fletcher-Warr Research Fellow of London University (at Oxford), 1939-41; and Lecturer in Physics, Electrical Laboratory, Oxford University, 1941-6.
The majority of his career, however was spent at the Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge and he was appointed successively: ICI Fellow, Cavendish Laboratory, 1946-49; Lecturer in Physics, University of Cambridge, 1949-65, Reader in Electron Physics, University of Cambridge, 1965-75, and then Emeritus. He was a Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, from 1963.
He was a founder member of the International Federation of Electron Microscope Societies, and its President from 1972-5. He was also President of the Royal Microscopical Society and a Vice-President of the Institute of Physics. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1972 and received its Royal Medal in 1979.
He published "Introduction to Electron Optics", 1946 (1951); "Practical Electron Microscopy", 1951; "X-ray Microscopy" (with W. C. Nixon), 1960; and "Modern Microscopy", 1966.
He died in November 1990.
Correspondence and papers concerning the development of the Electron Microscope
These papers were deposited at Churchill Archives Centre in June 1988 (accession 767), December 1990 (accession 875) and February 2007 (accession 1405)
This collection is owned by Churchill College, Cambridge
The papers are open for consultation by researchers using Churchill Archives Centre, Churchill College, Cambridge. Churchill Archives Centre is open from Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm. A prior appointment and two forms of identification are required.
Researchers wishing to publish excerpts from the papers must obtain prior permission from the copyright holder and should seek advice from Archives Centre staff.
Please cite as Churchill Archives Centre, The Papers of Dr (Vernon) Ellis Cosslett, COSS
The finding aid to the collection is available in hard copy form in the reading room at Churchill Archives Centre, at the National Register of Archives in London, and on the Janus website http://janus.lib.cam.ac.uk. More detailed box lists of accessions 875 and 1405 are available as hard copies in the reading room or as a word document to be emailed on request.
This collection level description was prepared by Andrew Riley in May 2003 using information from Who Was Who 1897-1996 (A and C Black). The basic catalogue with box lists was updated by Madelin Terrazas, November 2011.