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Biographical entry James, William Edwin (1931 - 1995)

6 March 1931
25 May 1995
Physicist and Optics


William James founded the company 'James Optics' in Melbourne in 1968, making equipment for Monash University, Mount Stromlo Observatory, the Anglo-Australian Telescope and the Orroral Space Ranging Observatory.


Born 6 March 1931. Died 25 May 1995. AM 1989. Arrived Melbourne 1947. Apprentice, Macphersons 1947-48, Leaving Certificate 1949-50, University of Melbourne 1951-54 (studied science, but did not graduate), repertory theatre, Victoria 1954-55,worked with Hargreaves' optical firm, London 1961-62, Imperial College London, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, optical technician then senior technical officer, Physics Department, University of Tasmania 1965-68, founded James Optics 1968. Churchill Fellowship 1975, Lloyd Rees Lecture, Australian Academy of Science 1993.

Related Corporate Bodies

Archival resources

Adolph Basser Library, Australian Academy of Science

  • William Edwin James - Records, 1962 - 1964, MS 137; Adolph Basser Library, Australian Academy of Science. Details

Published resources

Encyclopedia of Australian Science Exhibitions

Journal Articles

  • Bolton, H.C.; Coates, D.W., 'William Edwin James: Designer and Maker of Astronomical Optics', Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia, 13 (1996), 258-267. Details


Resource Sections

McCarthy, G.J.