Richard Davis, English radio astronomer, Died at 66

Professor Richard John Davis was born on June 28, 1949, and died on May 2, 2016.

He was a radio astronomer at Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, University of Manchester.

He attended March Grammar School for boys in 1960-67.

Richard Davis won a scholarship to attend Downing College at the University of Cambridge in 1968, where he studied the natural sciences, focusing on theoretical physics, for his undergraduate degree.

Richard Davis began an MSc in radio astronomy at Jodrell Bank in 1971, graduating with a diploma in 1972, followed by a PhD.

He also worked at Jodrell Bank, on the radio polarization of quasars, graduating in 1975.

Davis became an academic staff member at Jodrell in 1978, and over the course of 45 years he was involved in teaching, research, technical development at Jodrell Bank.

He was an Undergraduate, teaching across physics and astrophysics, as well as supervising postgraduate students.

Davis was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to science, in 2011.

Richard Davis was a member of the Royal Astronomical Society Council in 2012-2015.

He designed electronics to use the radio-linked Mark II and Mark III telescopes as Jodrell Bank’s first phase-stable radio interferometer, over a distance of 24 kilometres (15 mi).

During the late 1970s, Davis worked on radio links for MERLIN.

During the same time, he worked with Bernard Lovell and Ralph Spencer on observations of red dwarf flare stars using the Lovell Telescope (then the Mark I) and the Defford 25 metres (82 ft) telescope as an interferometer, which led to an unambiguous detection of YZ Canis Minoris at radio frequencies.

Richard Davis developed a 5 GHz broadband interferometer using the Lovell and Mark II telescopes, with his then-student Steve Padin, detecting radio emission from symbiotic stars and novae

Richard Davis studied 3C 273 in the 1980s and 1990s.

He was Project Scientist for MERLIN, the 32 m (105 ft) telescope at Cambridge, and the upgrades of the Lovell Telescope.

He studied the cosmic microwave background with the Very Small Array and the Planck satellite.

Richard Davis was the UK PI of Planck’s Low-Frequency Instrument, leading the development and construction of the 30 and 44 GHz low-noise amplifiers, as well as leading the UK post-launch support for the instrument.

Richard Davis spent over 15 years working on the Planck satellite.

Davis authored over 150 scientific publications.

Richard Davis passed away at 66 yrs old.