Ernest Walton was born 6 October 1903, the son of Reverend J. A. Walton and Anne Elizabeth (formerly Sinton). He was educated at the Methodist College, Belfast, Trinity College, Dublin and Cambridge University.
From 1927-34, Walton worked at the Cavendish Laboratories in Cambridge, firstly as the holder of the 1851 Overseas Research Scholarship, then from 1930-34 with the Senior Research Award of the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research; he was also the Clerk Maxwell Scholar, 1932-1934. In 1934 he returned to Ireland as Fellow of Trinity College, Dublin, from 1934-74 (Fellow Emeritus 1974), and Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural and Experimental Philosophy 1947-74.
Walton's awards include: Honorary Life Member, RDS, 1981; Honorary FIEI 1985; Honorary FInstP 1988; Honorary DSc: QUB, 1959; Gustavus Adolphus College, Minnesota, USA, 1975; Ulster, 1988. Honorary PhD Dublin City University, 1991. Awarded Hughes Medal by Royal Society, 1938; (with Sir John Cockcroft) Nobel Prize for Physics, 1951.
In 1934, Walton married Winifred Isabel Wilson (who died 1983); they had two sons and two daughters.
Papers on hydrodynamics, nuclear physics and micro-waves.
The material at Churchill Archives Centre comprises Walton's Cavendish Laboratory notebooks with associated papers and correspondence.
The papers were donated by Professor E T S Walton and Dr Alan Walton in 1976, 1998, 2004 and 2005.
The papers are arranged by scientific papers, Cavendish Laboratory notebooks, photocopied correspondence, correspondence between Walton and the Smithsonian Institution on the display of his papers, and miscellaneous items.
The collection is owned by Churchill College.
The collection is 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.
Material in this collection is open to researchers unless otherwise marked in the catalogue.
Researchers wishing to publish excerpts from the papers must obtain prior permission from the copyright holders and should seek advice from Archives Centre staff.
Please cite as Churchill Archives Centre, The Papers of E T S Walton, WLTN