Thank you very much for taking time from your busy
schedule this afternoon to attend another exciting presentation at the
Transistor Museum Lecture Hall. We are pleased that Mr. Rudi Herzog has
agreed to share with us his extensive knowledge on the Early History of Transistors in Germany.
Mr. Herzog, an electrical engineer by education and experience, has spent
the last several years researching this topic in his native country, and
has been able to uncover quite a bit of relevant documentation, samples of
early transistors, and even personally to interview some of the key
individuals who were active in this field in Germany in the 1950s. Almost
nothing has been published on this topic, so we are fortunate indeed to
have this opportunity to listen to Rudi’s presentation.
is a photo of a Rost GT10 point contact transistor. According to Rudi,
this device, from 1952, represents the earliest known commercial point
contact transistor manufactured in Germany.
History of Transistors in Germany
by Rudi Herzog
material in this lecture is
© 2001 by Rudi Herzog.
As most of you may know, the
transistor was invented in the American Bell Laboratories in December 1947
but introduced to the public not before mid 1948. Three years later, in
fall of 1951, Bell Labs began to give licenses against royalties to several
interested electronic companies. Some German firms acquired this licence as
well and started developing transistors for commercial and consumer
applications. However, all these works were based on experiences made by US
firms and appeared with a time lag of around 12 to 18 months.
The Start in 1952
The beginning for transistor
development in Germany was in early 1952. A small electronic laboratory
with the name of Dr. Rudolf Rost took the merit of establishing the very
first samples of a point-contact transistor. The company was located in
the town of Hannover which is around 100 miles south of Hamburg. Dr. Rost
only had two employees and seems to have been the pioneer of semiconductor
development in Germany.
Go To Rudi Herzog Page 2