Industrial Physics


    THE address which Dr. Paul D. Foote delivered before the American Physical Society as retiring president appears in full in the February issue of the Review of Scientific Instruments. In it he points out how inadequately industrial physics has been represented on the Council of the Society, and how as a consequence much of the work of the members of the Society has failed to attract the attention of industrial executives and they are unable to see that there are places for physicists in their organisations. It has been left to large corporations like the General Electric Company to show how much physicists can do for industry. Dr. Foote considers that the training in physics in most of the American universities fits a man neither for industry nor for a position in a junior college, and that industry has to look to the engineering rather than to the physics departments for men adequately trained in the fundamentals of classical physics in preference to those superficially acquainted with the latest developments of quantum mechanics. He hopes that the newly-formed American Institute of Physics and the new journal Physics will secure more intimate contact between physics and industry, and that the attitude of the Society towards applied physics in the next few years will insure that physics becomes a real profession rather than an academic avocation. Since the foundation of the Institute of Physics, in London in 1918, the position of British physicists has improved. Lord Rutherford recently pointed out that there has been a rapidly growing recognition of the importance of the physicist, not only in the academic world but also in industry, and he considers that the Institute of Physics can justly claim some of the credit for this.

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