Elected in 1987
“For basic contributions to the advancement of electromagnetic theory and its application to antenna design.”
BY DIPAK L. SENGUPTA AND THOMAS B.A. SENIOR
SUBMITTED BY THE NAE HOME SECRETARY
CHEN-TO TAI, emeritus professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of Michigan (UM) and one of the most respected and influential scientists in electromagnetics and antenna theory, passed away peacefully at his home in Ann Arbor on July 30, 2004.
He was born December 30, 1915, to a family of scholars who were also wealthy landowners in Luzhi Township on the outskirts of Soochow, China. In 1937, he received his bachelor’s degree in physics from Tsing-Hua University, China’s premier institute of higher learning in science and engineering as well as the humanities. He stayed on there as an assistant and also served two years as a communications officer in the Chinese army with the rank of major. In 1943, having obtained a scholarship from Harvard University, he left Kumming and flew to Calcutta (now Kolkata), then traveled across the Indian subcontinent to reach Bombay (now Mumbai); from there he sailed to the United States on a ship called the Cape of Good Hope, which eventually reached New York by way of that same cape. The voyage took 49 days.