In Memoriam: March 2014

IEEE mourns the loss of the following members

7 March 2014

Harold J. Peake
NASA engineer
Life Fellow, 92; died 12 October

Peake was an electrical engineer at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, in Greenbelt, Md.

He joined the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, in Washington, D.C., in 1942 as an engineer focused on radar, radio, and electronics. He began working on the Project Vanguard satellite program in the early 1950s and helped develop Explorer 1, the first U.S. satellite. He also helped develop cathode-ray tube technology.

He left for NASA in 1959 as a spacecraft systems engineer. He was promoted to chief of electrical engineering and, in 1979, was named chief of research and national needs.

Peake received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1942 from Virginia Tech. He earned a master’s degree in electrical engineering in 1954 from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a master’s in engineering administration in 1969 from George Washington University, in Washington, D.C.


ObitWare Photo: Purdue University

Willis H. Ware
Computing pioneer
Life Fellow, 93; died 22 November

Ware was an electrical engineer who helped build a machine in the late 1940s that became a prototype for modern computers. He was also instrumental in helping to write the Privacy Act of 1974, which set forth U.S. guidelines for protecting personal data in the information age.

From 1942 to 1946, he designed radar-detection tools at the defense electronics company Hazeltine Corp., on Long Island, N.Y. In 1946 mathematician John von Neumann invited Ware to help him design and develop high-speed electronic circuits for the Institute for Advanced Study machine, the first electronic computer built at Princeton University. The IAS machine’s designs would influence computer scientists elsewhere, including the creators of IBM’s first commercial scientific computer, the 701.

Ware was hired in 1951 by North American Aviation, in Los Angeles, to help the company move from punch-card machines to electronic computers. The following year he joined Rand Corp. in nearby Santa Monica. Rand is a nonprofit global policy organization that conducts research and analysis for the U.S. military. There he helped design the Johnniac computer, the longest-surviving computer of its time, operating for 13 years before being taken offline in 1966. It logged more than 50 000 hours.

In the 1970s, Ware was appointed to lead a committee addressing personal privacy in the computer era. The federal government adopted some of the committee’s policy recommendations in the Privacy Act of 1974.

Ware, a member of the IEEE Computer Society, received the 1993 IEEE Computer Pioneer Award for the design of the IAS machine and the Johnniac.

He received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia, and went on to earn a master’s degree from MIT and a Ph.D. from Princeton, both in electrical engineering.


ObitOkano Photo: ECTI Association

Fumio Okano
Innovator of 3-D displays
Fellow, 61; died 26 November

Okano helped introduce integral photography for 3-D displays, which project a 3-D image that audiences could see without wearing special glasses.

In 1978 he became a research engineer at NHK Science and Technology Research Laboratories, part of the Japan Broadcasting Corp., in Tokyo. His research focused on 3-D TV and high-definition TV cameras and systems. In the late 1990s, he and his colleagues developed a 3-D video system based on integral photography, a method that uses a TV camera to shoot images produced by a lens array. He left the company in 2011 to become managing director and executive research engineer at NHK Engineering Systems, also in Tokyo.

Okano was a member of the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society as well as the International Society for Optics and Photonics.

He earned bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in electrical engineering from Tohoku University, in Sendai, Japan, in 1976, 1978, and 1996.

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