Person: Carlson, Donald Earle
Don Carlson was an American mathematician who worked in mechanics and elasticity.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Glen Carlson was one of the five son's of Carl Hjalmer Carlson (1870-1959), a Swedish immigrant, and Carrie Nelson (1878-1951).
- The boys grew up in Tampico where Don attended Tampico Grade School being in the seventh grade in 1950.
- Carlson was then awarded a National Science Foundation Fellowship and remained at Urbana-Champaign to undertake work for his Master's Degree.
- Carlson applied to Brown University and to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for a place to study for a doctorate.
- Don and Susan Carlson had two sons, Jeffery and Jonathan.
- Now one of the reasons that Carlson had chosen Brown University was the fact that Eli Sternberg worked there.
- However, Sternberg took sabbatical leave in 1961-62 so Carlson had to choose another member of the faculty to advise him during his doctoral studies.
- it was Eli Sternberg who had perhaps the most profound influence on Carlson's thinking and approach to mechanics throughout his career.
- Carlson was awarded his Ph.D. in 1965 for his thesis Second and Higher Order Effects in a Class of Problems in Plane Finite Elasticity.
- Carlson's 1972 treatise on linear thermoelasticity in the 'Handbuch der Physik' is highly regarded, and his many papers on applied mechanics are widely acclaimed.
- Carlson was editor of the 'Journal of Elasticity' (1982-1997), and served on the editorial board of the 'Journal of Thermal Stress' for 22 years (1978-2000).
- To step into Carlson's office was to enter a world of knowledge completely filled with books.
- Carlson also pursued depth in his undergraduate courses and would, for instance, go beyond the usual, superficial definition of stress as force divided by area.
- His popularity among undergraduates can be seen in Carlson being named an honorary Knight of St Pat, one of the signal awards bestowed by the College of Engineering's students on one of its faculty.
- Carlson retired in 2006 but continued to undertake research and write papers.
- We have mentioned already several honours which were given to Carlson.
- Don was a kind and thoughtful person who was not only passionate about work but also possessed extraordinary social skills and a pleasing and magnetic personality.
Born 8 March 1938, Tampico, Illinois, USA. Died 21 August 2010, St Louis, Missouri, USA.
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Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive