Beckman DU Spectrophotometer

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The Beckman DU spectrophotometer is perhaps the greatest single instrument of the postwar period. The original design dates from 1941, but the machine really became "the universal spectrophotometer" in the science boom after World War II. More accurate than the Universal or the Spectronic 20, it produces accurate absorption spectra in both the ultraviolet and the visible regions of the spectrum with relative ease and repeatable accuracy. Although attempts were made to automate its scan and add recording features, it remained a point-by-point instrument that, although no longer made, still finds applications in today's laboratory.
The instrument is housed in a black steel case with a wrinkle finish.
Currently not on view
Physical Description
steel (overall material)
overall: 22.6 cm x 83 cm x 27.4 cm; 8 7/8 in x 32 11/16 in x 10 13/16 in
overall: 8 7/8 in x 32 in x 9 3/8 in; 22.5425 cm x 81.28 cm x 23.8125 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
serial number
Credit Line
Transfer from NIH
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Chemistry
Science & Mathematics
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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