Frances Saunders (scientist)

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Frances Saunders
Nationality United Kingdom
Citizenship United Kingdom
Education PhD, Physics of liquid crystal devices (1980-1984)
BSc, Physics (1972-1975)
Alma mater Nottingham University
Employer Institute of Physics
Known for Chief Executive of Dstl
Board member of
Engineering Development Trust - Trustee
Cranfield University - Council Member
Children None

Frances Saunders CB FREng FInstP is a British scientist and former civil servant. She was the chief executive of Dstl between August 2007 and March 2012.[1][2] Prior to this Saunders was a policy officer at the Office of Science and Technology and research scientist into liquid crystal devices at the Royal Signals and Radar Establishment. Saunders is the president of the Institute of Physics.[3]

Saunders attended the girls-only Portsmouth High School, before attending Nottingham University to study physics. She became Leyland's first female graduate engineer, on an electronic engineering apprenticeship, eventually leaving due to frustration that the electronic systems she worked on were not used on mass-production scales. This was when she joined the RSRE and started a part-time PhD in liquid crystal devices.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gilbert, Natasha (20 November 2007). "Interview: Frances Saunders | Education | The Guardian". The Guardian (London: GMG). ISSN 0261-3077. OCLC 60623878. Retrieved 12 June 2011. 
  2. ^ "Jonathan Lyle named as new Dstl Chief Executive". Ministry of Defence (MOD). Retrieved 22 December 2011. 
  3. ^ "Council". Institute of Physics Website. Institute of Physics. Retrieved 30 September 2013. 
  4. ^ Pinnell, Heather (July 2013). "Pioneer prepares for a new challenge" (PDF). Interactions (Institute of Physics). Retrieved 19 August 2013. 
Business positions
Preceded by
Martin Earwicker
Chief Executive of Dstl
Succeeded by
Jonathan Lyle