Sometime in the 1960's I read a novel featuring time travel via a giant underground synchrotron. At some point the protagonist travels to a future where the synchrotron facility has been destroyed in a war. The cover showed a skeleton at a control panel in the facility.

The protagonist was male and might have been US military. The facility might have been in the US southwest. One of the operators of the facility (and possibly the skeleton on the cover) was a female love interest of the protagonist. The protagonist might have traveled back to the present to try to avert the war and save female operator.

Some of these details may be conflations of other stories. I haven't found this plot in lists on Wikipedia or Goodreads.

  • Hi there! That's some info already but could you please take a look at these guidelines, see if they trigger any more memories you could edit in? Even details you could think are minor- everything can increase the chances f a successful ID :)
    – Jenayah
    Commented Jan 20, 2019 at 18:34

1 Answer 1


Possibly "First Through Time" by Stanley Bennet Hough, writing as Rex Gordon. Published 1962, so that works. I have only the Goodreads outline but:

  1. Male astronaut protagonist.

  2. Female operator of synchrotron in US.

  3. Future apocalypse.

  4. One of the cover designs show a silhouette against a clock face.

The top secret synchrotron took accurate photos of the future - and what they showed was disaster, both for the girl who ran the machine and the world she worked for. Major Judgen, astronaut, had trained for a first flight through space. Now he was called on to put his ability into an untested flight across time. Was his girl friend's death a certainty - and did that same certainty also doom the rest of humanity? Or was there a way to snatch a double victory from the discoveries to be made on the day after the world came to an end?

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