(Edwin) Roland Dobbs (2 December 1924 – 24 October 2016) was a British physicist, best known for his work in physical acoustics.
After gaining First Class Honours in Physics at 19 he was called up for radar research for the Admiralty, 1943-6, he was a research student at University College London, 1946-9, taking a PhD: 'The Viscosity of Liquid Alkali Metals'. and lecturer in Physics, Queen Mary and Westfield College, 1949-58. In 1977 he was awarded a D.Sc.
He then went to Bedford College, University of London as Head of Department of Physics, 1973–85 and Hildred Carlile Professor, 1973-90. Following the merger of Bedford and Royal Holloway College, he was Head of Department of Physics, Royal Holloway and Bedford New College, 1985-90. On his retirement, he became Emeritus Professor.
He was also Vice-Principal, 1981-2 and Dean of the Faculty of Science, 1980-2; Chairman of the Board of Studies in Physics, University of London, 1982-5; Vice-Dean, 1986-8 and Dean, 1988–90, Faculty of Science, University of London.
He was appointed to the following visiting Professorships: 1966: Brown University, Rhode Island. U.S.A. 1969: Wayne State University, Michigan, U.S.A. 1977: University of Tokyo, Japan. 1983: University of Delhi, India. 1984: Cornell University, N.Y., U.S.A.
He was a member of the Physics Committee of the Science Research Council, 1970–73 and of its Nuclear Physics Board, 1974–77, and a member of the Physics Committee of the Science and Engineering Research Council, 1983-86. He was Convenor, Standing Conference of Professors of Physics of Great Britain, 1985-88.
His research interests were in various areas of condensed matter physics: metals, superconductors, condensed inert gases, and latterly Helium 3 as Fermi liquid and superfluid. He was noted for his research on the physics of helium-3, including its behaviour as a superfluid, and published what was regarded as the definitive monograph 'Helium 3' in its various states in 2000. (Oxford University Press) Other publications include: Solid Helium Three (Oxford University Press): 1993. Electricity and Magnetism (Routledge & Kegan Paul):1984 and Basic Electromagnetism (Chapman & Hall): 1993.
He died on 24 October 2016 at the age of 91.
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