Death of Sotirios Bonanos

We are sorry to inform that Prof. Sotirios Bonanos, passed away on Tuesday, October 1st. He was a fine specialist in algebraic computer calculations and a scientist at the National Center for Scientific Research “Demokritos”. The sad news was given us by his daugther, Alceste Bonanos.

Death of Alex Harvey

I have recently become aware that Alex Harvey had passed away. (I don’t recall an earlier post of this information). I spent a semester at Queens’ in 1991-2 as a Visiting Distinguished Professor on Alex’s invitation. It was a very happy time when, apart from our overlapping interests in relativity, he took time to be my ‘dive buddy’ on the College’s scuba-diving course and introduced me to Thursday sailing races (on a 36ft boat named ‘Moveable Feast’, so not too serious…) at Port Washington. He was an engineer by original training and had, I believe, during his Army career, had a Presidential commendation for work on cryptography in the field (North Africa). Alex wrote a number of useful, if not outstanding, papers over many years, and also kept his friends and acquaintances supplied with frequent humorous emails… I’m sure I’m not the only relativist who will miss him

NY Times. Sept 14

HARVEY–Alexander Dr., noted physics professor dies at 95. Dr. Harvey taught at Queens College for 25 years where he became chairman of the Physics Dept. until his retirement in 1988. He served as an Army Captain during WWII. Dr. Harvey was a visiting scholar at NYU. He continued publishing papers until 2011. He is survived by his wife of 60 years Rhea Harvey, a brother Robert Harvey and nieces Susan Giordano and Mickie Mandel.

Obituary for Mauro Francaviglia

Mauro Francaviglia was born in Torino, on 22 june 1953 and passed away in Cosenza on 24 June 2013. He obtained his degree in Mathematics at the University of Torino in 1975 and he was a Full Professor at the University of Torino. He has held this position since 1980, when he was 27 years old. His scientific interests covered a wide range of topics, including the application of Differential Geometry in Mathematical Physics, Classical Mechanics, General Relativity and Field Theories, Calculus of Variations, Symmetries and Conservation Laws, Quantization and Thermodynamics. Over 300 lectures held at various Institutions in Italy and abroad. He directed several national and international research projects.

Author of over 250 papers, three monographs, 11 encyclopaedia long entries, Editor of 19 volumes of Proceedings and Director of two CIME Courses. He organized 20 national and international conferences, among which several national conferences in General Relativity and the World Conference GR14 in Florence (1995). Member of the Scientific Council of CNR-GNFM (1980-1996). Co-founder (1984) and Managing Editor of “Journal of Geometry and Physics”. Life member of the GRG Society, founder (1990) and President (1990-1996 and 2008-2012) of the Italian Society for General Relativity and Gravitation (SIGRAV), he also served as a member of the Board of the International Society for General Relativity and Gravitation (GRG) for nine years (1986-1995). Associate Editor of the “Journal of General Relativity and Gravitation” since 1999 and Managing Editor of the “International Journal of Geometrical Methods in Modern Physics”.

Death of Alberto Lobo

Dear colleagues,

It is with our deepest sorrow that we must announce that Prof. José Alberto Lobo Gutierrez passed away yesterday evening. He leaves behind a wife (Rosa Maria), a son (Albert), and a daughter (Montserrat).

Prof. Lobo has been a pioneer of the field of Gravitational Wave Astronomy in Spain, devoting his life to resonant ground-based detectors and to space-based ones. His contributions range from theoretical studies to the development of instrumentation, including data analysis methods. Even in the final stages of his cancer, he has been mainly concerned and actively planning towards maintaining and promoting the Spanish team activities and involvement into LISA PathFinder and its successor mission LISA. The Institut de Ciencies de l’Espai (CSIC-IEEC) will honour such vision and dedication.

Those who had the opportunity to work with Alberto know that he has always been a very close colleague and many times a friend. His dedication to research and to those who work with him has always been complete, transmitting his passion and joy to everybody.

In case you would like to express your condolences to the family, please, send them to gwart[AT], where they will be collected and forwarded to the family.


The LPF/LISA Spanish team
(Lluis Gesa, Ferran Gibert, Victor Hernandez, Nikos Karnesis, Ivan Lloro, Ignacio Mateos, Miquel Nofrarias, Carlos F. Sopuerta, Ulrich Sperhake)

Death of Leonid Grishchuk

Dear Friends,

With deep sadness we inform you that our colleague Leonid Grishchuk passed away in his sleep, on 13 September 2012, 2:25 am, after a brief battle with brain cancer. He leaves behind three daughters: Ekaterina Grishchuk, Alexandra Grishchuk, and Olga Grishchuk. One of us (Sathya) is collecting messages of condolence, which we will forward to them. Please send messages to B.Sathyaprakash[AT]

You can read a brief scientific biography of Leonid at:

Kip Thorne
Malcolm MacCallum
B.S. Sathyaprakash

Death of Franco Pacini, Florence

Dear Colleagues,

I regret having to inform you that Franco Pacini died in Florence.

Just before the discovery of the first pulsar (Hewish et al. 1968), Franco Pacini published a paper in Nature (vol. 216, 1967, p.567) on a possible emission mechanism which could power the Crab nebula. He proposed a rapidly rotating neutron star with a strong magnetic field emitting dipole radiation. After the discovery of the first pulsar, Pacini (1968) and Gold (1968), independently, suggested that pulsars are rotating neutron stars.

Best regards
Ignazio Bombaci

Death of Arthur Komar

Arthur Komar, Ph.D., 80, died Friday evening, June 2, 2011 at Menorah Park. Dr. Komar was the former dean of the Belfer Graduate School of Science at Yeshiva University in New York City; had worked at the National Science Foundation in Washington, DC; and was associated with the physics department at Syracuse University. As a student at Princeton University, he had tea with Albert Einstein. Arthur was a true renaissance man in every sense of the word. Survived by his children, Arne (Kelly) Komar and Tanya Komar; his grandchildren; his partner of 50 years, Dr. Alice Honig; and his former wife Dolly (Arnold Honig) Komar-Honig. Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Tuesday at Sisskind Funeral Chapel. Friends may visit with the family immediately prior to the service on Tuesday, from 10 to 11 a.m. at the funeral chapel, 3175 E. Genesee Street. Burial will be in the Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas section of Oakwood Cemetery. Sisskind Funeral Service LLC 3175 E. Genesee St. 446-4848

Published in Syracuse Post Standard on June 5, 2011

Prof. Letelier passed away

Prof. Patricio Anibal Letelier Sotomayor, born in Santiago, Chile, on the 11th September, 1943, passed away due to a cardiac arrest at his home in Campinas, SP, Brazil, on Thursday, June 9, 2011.

Prof. Letelier was a highly respected teacher and mentor to an enormous number of people in the country and around the world. He did his undergraduate studies in the University of Chile in the late sixties and obtained his Ph.D. in Physics from Boston University in 1977. He then joined the Department of Physics of the University of Brasilia and, in 1988, he left Brasilia and came to the Department of Applied Mathematics of the University of Campinas as a Professor of Mathematical Physics. Patricio was a beloved friend and colleague, and his passing is a huge loss on so many levels. He will be greatly missed and remembered always. He is survived by his wife, daughter, son, and granddaughter.

The website below is a homage to Prof. Patricio Letelier. Please visit it and feel free to express your fond remembrances of him and his work. The remembrances will be collected and passed on to Prof. Letelier’s family.

Alberto Saa
Department of Applied Mathematics,
UNICAMP, Campinas, SP, Brazil.
Phone: +55 19 3521 5952

Death of Brian Edgar

Brian Edgar

Brian Edgar sadly passed away last Thursday June 10th from a stroke. He is survived by a wife, son, daughter and grandson who all live in Linköping, Sweden. Brian worked at the Mathematics Department of Linköping University (LiU). He was born in Northern Ireland and had that marvellous broad Northern Ireland accent which people loved to hear.

Brian finished his PhD under the supervision of Clive Kilmister (who also sadly died about a month ago). Brian was an ‘Effer’, a name given by and to the PhD students who shared the office at room F of the old building of King’s College, on Surrey Street, just above the Aldwych station and the London Roman Bath, from mid 60′s to mid 70’s. That was a very rich period for gravitation physics when we lived under the strong influence of Felix Pirani, Hermann Bondi, Roger Penrose, Stephen Hawking, William Bonnor, Clive Kilmister among others. This was a rich period when many new ideas on gravitational physics were being created, mostly on its mathematical aspects.

After graduating from Queen’s Belfast, Brian worked in Cameroon and Ghana before his PhD studies and after his PhD exam he went back to work in Ghana. After many years in Ghana he moved to Botswana in 1982. During this time he also in secret supervised a banned ANC activist that later became a South African minister who opened the Durban GR meeting in 2001. He then moved to Linköping in Sweden in 1987, where he and Malcolm Ludvigsen inaugurated and developed the gravitational physics program at LiU. He was the supervisor of several successful PhD students.

One of his characteristics was to help the development of applied mathematics programs in developing countries, a passion that was born during his time in Africa. He was working on a program for collaboration between the Swedish and Brazilian applied mathematical programs, but it was beaten by the slow pace of bureaucracy and shortness of life.

Brian was a classical relativist, in the sense that his works were mainly motivated by geometrical aspects of Riemann geometry in general relativity. Part of his work was devoted to the field of exact solutions and in particular the GHP formalism and generalisations of it. An important outcome of these studies is the Edgar-Ludwig metrics. In the latter period, motivated by the support of Kilmister, he was working with various collaborators on the problem of Lanczos potentials and dimensionally-dependent identities for general relativity. At the time of his passing he was finishing one of such papers. We will miss his scientific enthusiasm, his willingness to help scientists around the world, and above all his always joyful presence.

From all friends of Brian

Death of Clive Kilmister

Clive Kilmister

I regret to have to report that Clive Kilmister died on the second of May 2010. Clive’s Ph D research was carried out at Queen Mary College where the cosmologist George McVittie was his supervisor. From 1950 until he retired in 1984 he spent his academic career in the Mathematics Department at King’s College London. In 1954, Hermann Bondi, Felix Pirani and Clive formed the nucleus of the King’s gravitational theory group, one of the small number of centres that initiated the renaissance of research on general relativity in the 1950′s. At one time Clive was a member of the International Committee on GRG and he was heavily involved in the organisation of the GR4 conference in London.

Clive had broad interests and at various times he was the president of the British Society for the History of Mathematics, the president of the Mathematical Association, and the president of the British Society for the Philosophy of Science. He was also Gresham Professor of Geometry from 1972 until 1988. As well as his research papers Clive wrote about a dozen books, including a number on relativity and classical mechanics. His Ph D research had been related to Eddington’s later work, which is opaque to most, and throughout his career he retained his interest in it. Later in life he and his long-term collaborator Ted Bastin became founding members of the Alternative Natural Philosophy Association. Together they wrote a number of books, the last of which “The Origin of Discrete Particles” was published in 2009.

Clive was noted for his willingness to undertake heavy administrative tasks. These he discharged amiably and efficiently. He was loved by the students and admired and respected by his grateful colleagues.

David Robinson, Emeritus Professor of Mathematics,
Mathematics Department, King’s College London, Strand, London WC2R 2LS, UK.

Room K4U.22, Fourth floor King’s Building, Strand Campus.
My office telephone: +44 (0)20 7848 2221;
Maths Department Office: +44 (0)20 7848 2828

Death of P. C. Vaidya

Date: Fri, 12 Mar 2010 09:57:16 +0530
From: aragam prasanna <…>
To: hyperspace[AT]
Subject: PC Vaidya

Dear Malcolm,

I am deeply sad to inform you and the international General Relativity Community of the passing away of Professor P C Vaidya, this morning. He was ailing for sometime in the last year and it finally ended with the cardiac arrest. Kindly put this information in a special bulletin if possible to the GR community.

Yours sincerely


From: Indian Association for General Relativity and Gravitation
Date: Fri, Mar 12, 2010 at 2:39 PM
To: iagrg[AT]
Subject: PC Vaidya (March 23, 1918 – March 12, 2010)

Dear IAGRG Member,

It saddens me to convey the news that Professor Prahalad Chunnilal Vaidya passed away on March 12, 2010 in the early hours. He was 92.

Prof Vaidya holds a very special place for the IAGRG community. It was his proposal that lead to the founding of the IAGRG in 1969. He was instrumental in nurturing the IAGRG.

An obituary will be displayed on the IAGRG site:

Ghanashyam Date,
Secretary, IAGRG

Link to the news item: