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Professor Dr Wladimir W Krysko CEng FIMMM (Obit)

Fellows' Lounge
1 May 2009

Professor Dr Wladimir W Krysko CEng FIMMM, who died in Watford, Hertfordshire, on 23 February 2009, spent most of his working life in the academic world.


He was born in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, in 1911, and after completing his schooling in Riga, Latvia, he studied Mechanical Engineering and Metallurgy at the Technische Universität Berlin. He graduated in 1941 as a Doctor of Engineering Sciences and became a Lecturer at the university’s Department of Analytical Chemistry, Faculty of Mining and Metallury, and a researcher at its Institute of Metals.


Working around the world

In 1949 he emigrated to Australia and was made a Research and Development Officer at The Broken Hill Associated Smelters in Port Pirie, South Australia. He went on to become a part-time Lecturer in dental metallurgy at the University of Adelaide, South Australia, while teaching science at St Peter’s College in the city. In 1954 he was appointed Foundation Head of the Department of Materials Science, The University of New South Wales, in Sydney.

During a sabbatical year in England in 1961 he conducted research at The British Non-Ferrous Metals Research Association and, in the mid-1960s, founded the Wilhelm Hofmann Memorial Prize to promote research into the properties and uses of lead.

In 1968, he accepted an invitation to return to the Technische Universität Berlin as a Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Materials Science. Three years later, he was appointed a lifetime professor.


Interests after retirement

After retirement he continued his interests in metallurgy and materials science by writing papers on the historical uses of metals. He authored and collaborated on over 80 scientific publications as well as short essays, the book Lead in History and Art, and several biographical reminiscences. He also contributed to the IOM3 journal of the Historical Metallurgy Society.

After a long life influenced by many of the 20th century’s political upheavals, his last years were spent quietly in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire.