Reference Work Entry

Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers

pp 170-171


Bates, David Robert

  • Alex DalgarnoAffiliated withUniversity of California, Irvine School of Physical SciencesDepartment of Astronomy, Harvard University Email author 

BornOmagh, Northern Ireland, 10 November 1916

DiedBelfast, Northern Ireland, 5 January 1994

Sir David Bates carried out innovative research in atomic, molecular, and optical physics, which he applied to problems of aeronomy and astronomy. He was educated at the Royal Belfast Academic Institution in Belfast, after which he entered the faculty of science of the Queen’s University of Belfast. He graduated in 1937 with B.Sc. degrees in experimental physics and mathematical physics, obtaining first-class honors in both. In 1938, Bates was awarded the M.Sc. degree. He married Barbara Morris in 1956, and they had two children, Kathryn Maud and Adam David.

After wartime research and before departing for Belfast in 1951, Bates was lecturer in the Department of mathematics and then reader in the Department of Physics at University College London. He was professor and head of the Department of Applied Mathematics of the Queen’s University of Belfast from 1951 to 1973, and then occupied a special res ...

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