By | November 25, 2021

Sir Martin Wood FRS Death – Sir Martin Wood FRS, CBE, HonFREng has passed away on Tuesday, November 23, 2021. Sir Martin was born 19 April 1927, he was educated at Gresham’s School, Holt and Trinity College, Cambridge University, where he read engineering, and Imperial College, London. Sir Martin and his wife, Audrey, have many philanthropic achievements, including donating £2m for the building of the Sir Martin Wood Lecture Theatre at the Clarendon Laboratory.

Sir Martin Wood FRS, CBE, HonFREng was a British engineer and entrepreneur. He co-founded Oxford Instruments, one of the first spin-out companies from the University of Oxford and still one of the most successful. He joined the Coal Board as a Bevin Boy for his National Service in 1945, working underground at the coal face first in South Wales and later in the Midlands. From 1955 to 1969, he was a Senior Research Officer at the Clarendon Laboratory at the University of Oxford. Sir Martin Wood joined Oxford Physics in 1955 as a Senior Research Officer, working with Professor Nicholas Kurti.

Martin’s work on resistive high-field magnets in Kurti’s research group led to other universities wanting access to the technology. Two years later in 1962 new superconductors were developed in the USA, and he soon acquired some material and made the first superconducting magnet outside the USA. Oxford Instruments has produced superconducting magnets for use in the world’s largest particle accelerators and a visit to the laboratories in any modern university physics department will reveal numerous Oxford Instruments magnets and cryostats.

In 1986, Martin was knighted for his services to science and received numerous awards and honorary doctorates. In addition, both Sir Martin and Lady Audrey have been generous in their many philanthropic endeavors. In 1987, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society, was a recipient of the Order of the Rising Sun, and received honorary degrees from eight British universities. He was also the President of Farm Africa, a development charity co-founded by his late brother Sir Michael Wood.

Photo Credits – Oxford Science Enterprises via Twitter.

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