Retired ORNL physicist has written a compelling memoir

D. Ray Smith

Carolyn Krause brings us yet another insight into one of our own, Frank Plasil, a longtime Oak Ridge resident, distinguished physicist, and retired corporate fellow of Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Frank recently published a compelling book titled, “Kaleidoscope Facets: A Memoir of Darkness and Light.” Carolyn has read his memoir, which is available from Frank or from Here is what she has to say about his memoir.


Frank Plasil has participated in world-class scientific experiments, interacted with Nobel Prize winners and traveled the world. An immigrant from Europe, he has lived a privileged life full of excitement, awe, wonder, love and joy. But he has also faced the disappointments, sorrows, fears, anger and frustrations that mark most people’s personal and professional lives.

In his memoir, he reveals how he has helped and hurt himself and others throughout his journey. His family life was marred by addiction issues and a tragic loss. He and his international colleagues fell short in their experimental quest to prove the existence of the theorized Big Bang “soup.” He repeatedly compares the positive and negative emotions he has felt during his life’s peaks and valleys with the changing patterns of light and dark colors reflected by the pieces of colored glass and mirrors in a kaleidoscope as its tube is turned.

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