In Memoriam: November 2008

IEEE mourns the loss of the following members

7 November 2008

C. Lester Hogan

Pioneering physicist

Life Senior Member, 88; died 12 August

C. Lester Hogan was a pioneer in the electronics industry who led Motorola to become the most profitable chipmaker in the 1960s and then left to join the Fairchild Semiconductor.

Hogan started at Motorola in 1958 as general manager of its semiconductor operation in Phoenix. Motorola stock doubled in the 10 years under his management.

In 1968 he joined Fairchild as president and CEO of integrated-circuit and microprocessor development, taking seven of his Motorola co-workers with him.

Prior to joining Motorola, he worked for three years at Bell Labs in Murray Hill, N.J. There, he invented the microwave gyrator, a device that can stimulate inductance. He taught at Harvard University from 1953 to 1958.

He was the IEEE Executive Vice President in 1978, as well as, vice president of the IEEE Technical Activities Board in 1979. He was also a former member of the IEEE Spectrum editorial board and served on the Vladimir Karapetoff Award Committee of Eta Kappa Nu, an engineering honor society. Among other recognitions, he was a recipient of the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society Pioneer Award.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering in 1942 from Montana State University, in Bozeman. He earned a doctorate in physics in 1950 from Lehigh University, in Bethlehem, Pa.


Ramasamy “Raj” Natarajan

Power systems textbook author

Senior Member, Age; died 18 September

Ramasamy “Raj” Natarajan was an assistant professor of power system analysis from 1986 to 1991 at Penn State University, in University Park. He wrote two popular textbooks on power systems, Computer-Aided Power System Analysis (Marcel Dekker, 2002) and Power System Capacitors (CRC Press, 2005).

Active in IEEE, Natarajan was a member of the Central Pennsylvania Section’s executive council as well as its newsletter editor and secretary. He was coordinator and communications chair for the IEEE Northern New Jersey Section and treasurer for the Kansas City chapter of the IEEE Power & Energy Society.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1970 from the University of Madras, India, a master’s degree  in 1982 from the University of Saskatchewan, Canada, and a doctorate in electrical engineering in 1986 from the University of Washington, Seattle.


James H. Goodman

Systems engineer

Life Senior Member, 87; died 30 September

James H. Goodman, a systems assurance engineer at RCA Corp. in New York City, worked on communications systems for U.S. defense projects at NASA.

Goodman was born in Berlin, where he apprenticed as an electrician. He moved to the United States in 1941 and worked as an electrician prior to being drafted into the U.S. Army in 1943. He served as a translator for the War Crimes Commission in Pisa, Italy, until 1947, when he was discharged. In 1956 he joined RCA, where he worked until he retired in 1995.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1956 and a master’s in business in 1960, both from Drexel University, Philadelphia.


Amos Joel

Cellphone Pioneer

Fellow, 90; died 25 October

Amos Joel invented a switching device in 1972 that allowed cellphone users to make uninterrupted calls while moving from one cell tower to another.

Joel worked at Bell Labs, in Murray Hill, N.J., for 43 years until he retired in 1983. When he first began there, he worked in cryptology studies, and then in electronic switching systems from 1948 to 1960. He developed the first large-scale telephone exchange system. From 1961 to 1968, he spearheaded the development of advanced telephone services. Later, he worked in several areas, including the accounting center and operating services.

Prior to his work at Bell Labs, he designed circuits for early digital computers during World War II that played a key role in the creation of encryption machines for military use. After the war, he designed the first automatic telephone-billing equipment.

An active member of IEEE, he helped form the Switching Committee in 1947. He served as the 1974 president of the IEEE Communications Society and was a former chair of the society’s New York Section. He received the 2000 Vladimir Karapetoff Award from Eta Kappa Nu, an engineering honor society.

He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from MIT in 1940 and 1942.

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