W. Nelson Beck

William Nelson Beck (1923-1996)

Joliet Herald News article from 1996 | Discovery of Ultrasound | Argonne National Lab Official site | Obituary

Joliet Physicist's work changed medical world

Nelson William Nelson "Nels" Beck was a modest man. The Joliet man never bragged about the contribution that he had given the world. Even his own son didn't know until a few years ago.

In 1957, Beck, a physicist, was conducting an experiment at Argonne National Labratory. He was working on a scanner for production volume testing of reactor fuel elements. He substituted his arm for a fuel element and adjusted the sensitivity of the recording unit. He could distinguish flesh from bone on the electrosensitive paper. He had a picture. And ultrasound had been discovered.


Article appeared in Joliet Herald News, front page, June 22, 1996.


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