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Eric Gregory

Eric Gregory

January 1, 1937 to August 28, 2016
Eric Gregory (2002)

Eric Gregory Passed Away

January 13, 2017 (PO52). Dr. Eric Gregory, one of the pioneers in the commercial production of Nb-Ti superconducting strands, passed away peacefully on Sunday, August 28, 2016. Dr. Gregory was born in Golborne, England, the son of Henry P. and Ellen (Waterworth) Gregory.

Eric Gregory received his B.A. and Masters degrees in Natural Science, and his Ph.D. in Metallurgy from the University of Cambridge in the UK. His  Ph.D. Thesis was on Internal Oxidation of Silver Alloys. He was awarded a Fellowship granted jointly by the UK Ministry of Education and the U.S. Mutual Security Agency to study production technology in the United States where he did post-graduate work at the University of Michigan and at MIT. He worked on sintered aluminum powder products and dispersion hardened copper and nickel based alloys. Dr. Gregory has published over one hundred papers on a variety of topics, principally superconducting materials, and powder metallurgy materials.

In 2002 he was one of the first four recipients of the IEEE Award for Continuing and Significant Contributions to Applied Superconductor Materials Technology for his pioneering work in optimizing the critical current density in niobium-titanium alloys and leadership in the commercialization, by a number of companies, of multifilamentary conductors for high energy physics particle accelerator projects.

He was a partner in Supergenics LLC before retirement and the recipient of a number of Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grants from the US Department of Energy. For 13 years he was Manager of R & D for Intermagnetics General Corporation (IGC) Advanced Superconductors Division (now Mitsubishi and formerly Luvata) and spent most of this time directing work on the development, manufacturing, and testing of internal-tin Nb3Sn. Much of this work was DOE sponsored. His small group has also supplied the majority of the conductor made in North America for the US section of the ITER Central Solenoid Model Coil, Nb3Sn material for KSTAR and the coil to be levitated in the LDX project. Recently, in development work for DOE in the High Energy Physics (HEP) area, the group made strands with critical current in the superconductor fraction (Jcs) of 2550 A/mm2 at 12T in the non-Cu.

Dr. Gregory had 39 years of experience in applied superconductivity research and, before joining IGC, was in charge of all superconducting operations at Supercon, Inc. as Executive Vice President. Under his direction, the strand adopted by the SSC and subsequently the LHC was developed.

Prior to that he was General Manager of Oxford-Airco and established and operated the Carteret, NJ facility of what is now Oxford Superconducting Technology. During this period, the strands now used routinely in MRI and NMR were developed. Also, the Westinghouse coil conductor (the first Nb3Sn Cable in Conduit Conductor (CICC)) was developed.

From 1972 to 1979 he was Director of Corporate Research and Development for Airco at what is now BOC Group, plc. Technical Center in Murray Hill, NJ. From 1959 to 1972 he was Assistant Director and later the Director of the Physical Sciences Section of Airco’s Central Research Laboratory.

From 1956 to 1959 he worked in powder metallurgy of heat treatable cutting tools and burnable poisons for fission reactors at the Sintercast Corporation in Yonkers, NY.

From 1953 to 1956 he worked in the production and development of conventional powder metallurgy parts for the Manganese Bronze & Brass Co. in Ipswich UK.

He was past president of Cambridge University Metallurgy Society, The Metal Science Club of New York, the New York Chapter of the American Society for Metals, and the New York Chapter of The American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers.

He leaves his beloved wife of 60 years, Blanche L. (Ring) Gregory of Holden, Massachusetts, and daughter, Pamela Gregory of Campbellsville, Kentucky.

Notes written by Bruce Zeitlin and Bruce Strauss.