Monday, May 12, 2008

Sarnoff's Emmy Returns

One of the highlights in our museum tours is explaining how the Emmy award honoring the best in television programming, technique, and technology got its name from the Image Orthicon video camera tube invented at the new RCA Laboratories in Princeton during World War II. (See project head Albert Rose with his brainchild on the right.) We have the first "Emmy," or "immy" tube, as NBC's engineers nicknamed it but no Emmy, much to the dismay of volunteer Sharon Chapman. Thanks to her gentle prodding, executive director Alex Magoun arranged for the return of David Sarnoff's 1962 Trustees Award Emmy from its case in Sarnoff Corporation's lobby. It now enjoys a case of its own after a quick trip to the optical polishing shop, where Doug Coombs gave the gleaming statuette the once-over. Welcome back, general!