Biography:C.W. Smith (engineer)

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Short description: American engineering scientist
C. W. Smith
Born(1926-01-01)January 1, 1926
DiedJuly 30, 2012(2012-07-30) (aged 86)
Alma materVirginia Tech (MS)
Virginia Tech (BS)
Scientific career
fracture mechanics
InstitutionsVirginia Tech

Charles  William Smith (January 1, 1926 — July 30, 2012) was an American engineer and professor.[1][2]


Smith earned a BS in Civil Engineering in 1947 and an MS in Applied Mechanics in1950 from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.[3]

Research and career

Smith became a full-time instructor in 1948 while working on his master's degree. He was promoted to assistant professor in 1950 upon completing his degree. At the time Virginia Tech was strictly a teaching institution and Smith pushed for a stronger role of performing research. Following a seminar from George Rankine Irwin, Smith became interested in fracture mechanics and applying photoelasticity.[4] He was one of the investigators on the 1969 Department of Defense Themis grant that served as the genesis of Virginia Tech's international leadership in composite and advanced materials.[5] He retired in 1992 and became an Alumni Distinguished Professor Emeritus.[3] Smith was named an Honorary Member of the Society for Experimental Mechanics in 2002, a position held until his death in 2012.[6]

Awards and recognition


  1. "Charles William Smith Obituary (2012) Roanoke Times". 
  2. "Bill Smith - View Obituary & Service Information" (in en). 
  3. 3.0 3.1 "C. William Smith" (in en). 
  4. "The Old and New…: A Narrative on the History of the Society for Experimental Mechanics" (in en-US). 
  5. "History of the Engineering Science and Mechanics Department Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University - PDF Free Download". 
  6. 6.0 6.1 "Society for Experimental Mechanics". 
  7. "Society for Experimental Mechanics". 
  8. "C. William Smith" (in en). 
  9. "Society for Experimental Mechanics". 
  10. 10.0 10.1 "In memoriam: C.W. Smith, Alumni Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Engineering Science and Mechanics" (in en). 
  11. "In Remembrance | American Academy of Mechanics" (in en-US). 
  12. 12.0 12.1 "Society for Experimental Mechanics". 
  13. "Society for Experimental Mechanics". 
  14. "Fellows" (in en). 
  15. "Academy of Engineering Excellence" (in en). 
  16. "Society for Experimental Mechanics".