Alan G. Thomas

Scientist, Award Winner

25

Who is Alan G. Thomas?

Professor Alan G. Thomas is an international authority on the mechanics of rubbery materials, in particular their fracture mechanics properties.

Thomas attend Brasenose College, Oxford to study physics, graduating in 1948. He then accepted a position at the British Rubber Producer's Research Association. His research director was Dr Ronald S. Rivlin, who suggested that he study the strength of rubber.

He developed the theories of strength and crack growth in rubber, starting from the work of Alan Arnold Griffith. He demonstrated that Griffith's strain energy release rate provided a useful way to characterize the conditions at a crack tip, a problem that previously had been thought intractable due to the finite straining and nonlinearly elastic stress-strain behavior of rubber.

Thomas has been recognised with many prizes and medals. Most notable of these are the Colwyn Medal of the UK Plastics and Rubber Institute and the Charles Goodyear Medal of the American Chemical Society. His employers MRPRA, received the Prince Philip award in 1990 for his pioneering work on earthquake bearings.

He has been a visiting Professor in the Materials Department at Queen Mary, University of London since 1974.

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Nationality
  • United Kingdom
Profession

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

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