L.T.E. Thompson

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Dr. Louis Ten Eyck "Tec" Thompson (October 24, 1891 in South Haven, Michigan[1] – December 13, 1978);[2] known as Dr. Tommy[3]) was a US physicist interested in thermodynamica and ballistics and as an expert working for the US Navy from 1920 to 1954.[4] He was the first technical director at the China Lake Naval Air Stations, in California where he was involved in work on the Manhattan Project (helping in designing the "gun" used to initiate nuclear explosives[3]) and most involved in the development of rockets for naval and marine fighter aircraft.[4]

Thompson received his BS from Kalamazoo College in 1914, MA in 1915 and PhD in 1917 from Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts. During 1917-19 he was an assistant professor and fellow at Clark doing research on thermodynamics and ballistics.[1]

The Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake named an award in his honor.[4]


  1. ^ a b J. McKeen Cattell and Dean R. Brimhall, ed. (1921). American men of science (Third ed.). Garrison, New York: The Science Press. p. 682. Thompson Dr Louis T(en) E(yck), Clark University, Worcester, Mass. Physics. South Haven, Mich, October 24, 1991. B.S, Kalamazoo, 14; A.M, Clark, 15 Ph.D. 17. Instr. and asst. prof. physics, Clark, 17–19, research fellow ballistic inst. and indust. research laboratories, 19–, Nat. Research Council fellow 20– Assoc. Physical Soc. Dynamics; thermodynamics; ballistics. 
  2. ^ "Louis Thompson Dies, Was Dahlgren Physicist". The Free Lance-Star. December 14, 1978. Retrieved 6 May 2011. 
  3. ^ a b Christman, Al (1995). "Making It Happen". Invention & Technology Magazine. 11 (1). Retrieved 9 February 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c History of China lake