31 May 1925 to 22 May 2018
Dr Guy White was elected to the Academy in 1970 and was distinguished for his experimental contributions to knowledge of the transport properties, thermal capacities and thermal expansions of solids. His studies of electrical and thermal conduction of metals, alloys, semi-conductors and solidified inert gases revealed the contributors of lattice and electrons and the roles of defects and mutual interaction of lattice waves. Renown as an outstanding experimenter, his book, Experimental Techniques of Low Temperature Physics, has been translated into several languages and is a standard text in the field.
In recognition of his contributions, Dr White received many prestigious prizes and awards including the Yeram Touloukian Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the David Syme Research Prize from the University of Melbourne. He was a Fellow of the Institute of Physics (UK) and a Foundation Fellow of the Australian Institute of Physics. Upon his official retirement in 1990 as Chief Research Scientist, CSIRO Division of Applied Physics, Dr White was made an Honorary Fellow of the CSIRO Division of Materials Science and Engineering. He received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Wollongong in 1994, and was a Visiting Fellow at the ANU’s Research School of Physical Sciences and Engineering from 2000 to 2001. In 2000, he was appointed to the Order of Australia in the General Division (AM) for services to low temperature physics.
Dr White was actively involved in the Academy. He joined the Council in 1977 and served as Vice-President (Physical Sciences) from 1979 to 1980. Over many years, he contributed to the Academy’s National Committees, most notably the Committee for Data in Science and Technology (CODATA), which he also chaired. He also represented the Academy on the National Commission of the UNESCO Committee for Scientific Information. Dr White’s other contributions included his service to the Academy’s international exchange programs and to the Editorial Board of Historical Records of Australian Science. As Chair of the NSW Regional Group during the early 1980s, he hosted a dinner for Fellows with then President of the Royal Society, Sir Andrew Huxley. He also served on the Sectional Committee responsible for Applied Physical Sciences, including as Chair of the Committee from 1998 to 2000.
Dr White was interviewed by Professor Neville Fletcher in 2010.
© 2019 Australian Academy of Science