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|This is an unofficial draft definition presented for information and comment.|
- A device that uses alternating electric fields to accelerate subatomic particles (a particle smaller than an atom, such as an alpha particle or a proton). When these particles strike ordinary nuclei, radioisotopes are formed. For his work in developing the cyclotron in the early 1930s, Ernest Lawrence of the University of California received the 1939 Nobel Prize in Physics.