Radiation Biology Lab in Rockville, Maryland

ID: SIA2011-0513 and building-15-60


Form/Genre: Exterior

Date: c. 1975

Citation: Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 9597, Box 1, Folder: Walter A. Shropshire Oral History Interivews

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  • Image of the southwest corner of the Radiation Biology Lab's building in Rockville, Maryland. It is sometimes called the Parklawn facility since it is located on Parklawn Drive. A hydraulic lift with the solar radiation instruments can be seen on the roof.
  • The history of the Radiation Biology Laboratory (RBL) can be traced to May 1, 1929, when the Division of Radiation and Organisms was established by Secretary Charles G. Abbot to undertake investigations of the effect of solar radiation on living organisms. In 1941, the Division was administratively placed under the Smithsonian's Astrophysical Observatory.On February 16, 1965, the Division of Radiation and Organisms was abolished. Its work was continued by the newly established Radiation Biology Laboratory (RBL). The research program at RBL was three-pronged: regulatory biology, or how sunlight regulates growth and development of biological organisms; solar radiation measurements; and carbon dating. In 1970, RBL relocated to Rockville, Maryland, but closes in 1986 when some of its programs merge with the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center.


  • Radiation Biology Laboratory
  • Smithsonian Environmental Research Center Division of Radiation and Organisms


Historic Images of the Smithsonian


This image is included in Interview 15 of the Shropshire Oral History Interviews, its original negative number is building-15-60.

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 9597, Box 1, Folder: Walter A. Shropshire Oral History Interivews

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu


c. 1975

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ID Number

SIA2011-0513 and building-15-60

Physical description

Number of Images: 1 Color: Black and White ; Size: 6.44w x 8h ; Type of Image: Exterior ; Medium: Digital Image

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