Historical Records of Australian Science Historical Records of Australian Science Society
The history of science, pure and applied, in Australia, New Zealand and the southwest Pacific

Robert Street 1920–2013

Michael N. Barber and Paul G. McCormick

Historical Records of Australian Science 27(2) 211 - 224
Published: 07 November 2016


Following wartime work on radar and a University of London PhD awarded for measurement of absolute power, Bob Street developed his interest in low-temperature magnetism in solids while on the staff at Sheffield University. In 1960 he became Foundation Professor of Physics at Monash University where he built a department with strong capabilities in solid state physics. His own research continued at Monash but was put aside when he became Director of the Research School of Physical Sciences at the Australian National University (1973–7) and then Vice-Chancellor at the University of Western Australia (1978–86). Although the ANU experience was not a happy one, he flourished at UWA where his initiatives and strategic thinking laid the groundwork for advancement of the university. Street had kept up with advances in his research field and upon retirement he went back to it with notable success in publication, supervision of research students, acquisition of research grants and fruitful collaborations. He is fondly remembered as a first class physicist with a passion for cricket.


© Australian Academy of Science 2016

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