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RICHARD SKALAK

1923-1997

BY SHU CHIEN

RICHARD SKALAK, an internationally renowned authority in bioengineering, mechanical engineering, and civil engineering, died on August 17, 1997, at the age of seventy-four.

Elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1988, Richard was a leader in applying engineering principles and techniques to elucidate many important biomedical problems. He had the unique ability to combine elegant theoretical modeling with modern experimental investigations to develop new concepts on the structure and function of living systems in health and disease.

During his career, which spanned more than half a century, Richard published more than two hundred original scientific papers and authored six books. He trained twenty Ph.D. students and a similar number of postdoctoral fellows, most of whom hold key positions in academia and industry. His outstanding research and educational efforts have generated strong effects worldwide in fluid mechanics, biorheology, and tissue engineering.

Richard received his B.S. (1943), C.E. (1946), and Ph.D. (1954) in civil engineering and engineering mechanics from Columbia University. From 1944 to 1946 he served in the U.S. Naval Reserve as an instructor in radar and sonar in Washington, D.C. He was an instructor in the Department of Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at Columbia from 1948 to 1954, while pursuing his Ph.D. study. He was appointed assistant



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