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date: 12 December 2019

Edgerton, Harold E(ugene)locked

(b Freemont, NE, April 6, 1903; d Jan 10, 1990).
  • Mary Christian

Extract

(b Freemont, NE, April 6, 1903; d Jan 10, 1990).

American photographer. He learnt photography as a boy and studied electrical engineering at the University of Nebraska. After graduation in 1925, he went to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, where he received his doctorate and remained as a member of the Electrical Engineering Faculty. From the early 1930s he conducted pioneering research in stroboscopic photography, which permitted him to freeze exceedingly fast movement and make exposures between 1/10,000 and 1/1,000,000 of a second. The famous photographs that resulted revealed to the world for the first time some of the lost mysteries of everyday motion, including a falling drop of milk refracting into a coronet and bullets rupturing such objects as an apple, a balloon, a lightbulb and a tank of water. These exposures, too fast for any camera shutter to capture, were created with an ordinary 35mm camera and Edgerton’s electrical control of an absolutely instantaneous flash of light in a dark room, which exposed the film to bright light well within any possible shutter speed....

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