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Biographical entry De Laeter, John Robert (1933 - 2010)

AO, FTSE

Born
3 May 1933
South Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Died
16 August 2010
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Occupation
Physicist

Summary

John de Laeter was a physicist at the forefront of research in dating the Earth's mantle and exploring the outer reaches of the Solar System. His research was in the fields of geochronology, nuclear physics and cosmochemistry, and he was a leader in the application of mass spectrometry in these areas. At Curtin University of Technology he was Professor of Physics and Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research and Development. De Laeter played a central role in the development and application of technology in Western Australia, including fostering collaboration between government, industry and the universities. He was instrumental in the establishment of the Scitec Discovery Centre, Perth, and the Gravity Discovery Centre, Gingin, Western Australia. Minor Planet 3893 de Laeter named in his honour as is the John de Laeter Centre of Mass Spectrometry, Jack Hills, Western Australia.

Details

Events

1957
Career position - Teacher, Perth Technical College
1959
Career position - Science teacher, Bunbury High School
1966
Education - PhD, University of Western Australia
1968 - 1974
Career position - Head, Department of Physics, Western Australian Institute of Technology
1974 - 1981
Career position - Dean of Applied Science, Western Australian Institute of Technology
1980 - 1981
Career position - President, Royal Society of Western Australia
1980 - 1991
Career position - Member, Commission of Atomic Weights and Isotopic Abundances, International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry
1981 - 1984
Career position - President, Conservation and Environment Council of Western Australia
1981 - 1984
Career position - Associate Director, Engineering and Science, Western Australian Institute of Technology
1983 - 1986
Career position - Chairman, Advisory Committee for Western Australia, CSIRO
1983 - 1987
Career position - Secretary, Commission of Atomic Weights and Isotopic Abundances, International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry
1984 - 1986
Career position - Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research and Development, Western Australian Institute of Technology
1984 - 1987
Career position - Chairman, Western Australian Science, Industry and Technology Council
1986 - 1995
Career position - Professor of Physics, Curtin University of Technology
1987 - 1991
Career position - Chairman, Commission of Atomic Weights and Isotopic Abundances, International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry
1987 - 1995
Career position - Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research and Development, Curtin University
1987 - 2010
Award - Fellow, Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering
1988 - 1996
Career position - Deputy Chair (later Patron), Scitech Discovery Centre, Perth
1988 - 2003
Career position - Chair (later Patron), Technology Park
1989 - ?
Career position - Governor, Clunies Ross Foundation
1990 - 1995
Career position - Director, Technical Innovation Management, Curtin University of Technology
1992
Award - Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in recognition of service to education
1992
Award - ANZAAS Medal
1993
Award - Medal of the Royal Society of Western Australia
1995
Award - Honorary Doctorate of Technology, Curtin University
1995
Life event - Retired
2006
Award - Lifetime Achievement Award, Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering
2009
Award - Inducted into the Western Australian Science Hall of Fame

Related Awards

Related Corporate Bodies

Published resources

Journal Articles

  • Anon, 'John de Laeter was one of WA's most noted scientists', Focus, 164 (2010), 46. Details
  • Anon, 'Vale Emeritus Professor John de Laeter, AO, PhD, DSc, BSc (Hons), BEd (Hons), HonDTech (Curtin), HonDLitt W. Aust, FTSE, FAIP 1933-2010', Proceedings of the Royal Society of Western Australia, 2011 (April) (2011), 5-6. Details
  • Anon, 'Obituary - John Robert de Laeter, 1933-2010', Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia, 96 (2013), 29. Details
  • de Laeter, J. R., 'The Role of Physics in Geochronology', Australian Physicist, 17 (8) (1980), 127-129. Details
  • de Laeter, J. R., 'The Role Science and Technology Has Played in Australia's 200 Years of European Development', Australian Science Teachers Journal, 35 (2) (1988), 9-15. Details
  • de Laeter, J. R., 'The influence of American and British thought on Australian physics education', Science Education, 73 (4) (1989), 445-57. Details
  • De Laeter, J. R.; Putt, G., 'Physics Enrolments in Australian and New Zealand Universities 1994-1999', The Physicist, 37 (1) (2000), 11-15. Details
  • Downard, K. M. and De Laeter, J. R., 'A History of Mass Spectrometry in Australia', Journal of Mass Spectrometry, 40 (9) (2005), 1123-1139. Details

Resources

Helen Cohn