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National Museum of Nuclear Science & History

Harvey C. Rentschler

ConsultantChicago, IL

Manhattan Project VeteranScientist

Harvey C. Rentschler was an American inventor and director of research at the Westinghouse Electric Corporation Lamp Plant in Bloomfield, New Jersey. After receiving his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University, Rentschler taught physics at the University of Missouri before joining Westinghouse.

Working with deputy research director John W. Marden, Rentschler developed a reliable process for producing pure uranium metal. In 1942, Westinghouse was contracted by the University of Chicago Met Lab to produce uranium. The company successfully provided more than three tons of uranium for Chicago Pile-1, and supplied approximately 69 tons of uranium for the Manhattan Project.

Rentschler died at age 68 on March 23, 1949, two years after his retirement from Westinghouse. He received more than 100 patents for his inventions, including the sterilamp, a bacteria-killing lamp.


Harvey C. Rentschler's Timeline
1903 Received a B.S. from Princeton University.
1908 Received a Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University.
19081917 Professor of Physics at the University of Missouri.
1917 Began work at the Westinghouse Electric Company.
1922 With John W. Marden, first developed a process to refine uranium metal from uranium salts.
1942 Produced more than three tons of uranium for Chicago Pile-1.
19471949 Visiting professor at Princeton University's School of Engineering.
1949 Mar 23rd Died in East Orange, NJ.

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