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Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

December 6, 1951

Present: George R. Harrison (Chairman), Gaylord P. Harnwell, George B. Pegram, H. K. Schilling, J. C. Steinberg

AIP Staff: Henry A. Barton, Wallace Waterfall, R. R. Davis, Kathryn Setze, Betty H. Goodfriend

Guest: Elmer Hutchisson, Editor, JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSICS

1. Minutes.

The minutes of the meeting of September 11, 1951 were approved as distributed.

2. Report on 20th Anniversary Meeting.

The Secretary presented a financial report on the meeting indicating that income from registration fees, sale of booths, and advertising had just about covered expenses. He also presented statistics on registration and placement and copies of a report which had been sent to exhibitors analyzing attendance at the meeting (copies attached). Although the financial report shows a net loss of $2143.09 for the meeting, the extra advertising revenue from the October issue of PHYSICS TODAY amounted to approximately $3000 which more than offsets the loss.

Inquiries regarding displays at other Society meetings have been received from publishers who participated in the book exhibit. The Committee agreed that there would be no objection to the Institute’s handling book displays at Member Society meetings, if the Society wishes, profits to be divided equally between the Institute and the Society.

3. Plans for 1956 Meeting.

It was the consensus of the Committee that the staff should make tentative plans for a 25th Anniversary meeting to be held in the East in the Spring of 1956. Atlantic City, Washington, Cleveland, and Philadelphia were discussed but it was agreed that New York City would be most desirable if suitable facilities can be found. An attendance of over 5000 should be anticipated.

5. Donors’ Book.

Mr. Barton showed the Committee the leather folder he had purchased in Italy for the list of contributors to the building fund. The Committee agreed it was very satisfactory and the committee on the Donors’ Tablet was discharged.

6. Representative on the U.S.A. National Committee of IUPAP.

The Director reported that, under the Constitution of the U.S.A. National Committee of the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics, the Institute has the right to nominate a member of the Committee once every three years for a three year term. The first such term commences January 1, 1952. On motion made, seconded, and carried, H. A. Barton was nominated to the USA National Committee of IUPAP for the 1952-54 term.

7. Election of Associates.

The Secretary reported receipt of applications for Associateship from Hughes Aircraft Company and Linde Air Products. On motion made, seconded, and carried, Hughes Aircraft Company and Linde Air Products were elected Associates.


At the request of Mr. Harnwell, Managing Editor Davis discussed the year’s activities on PHYSICS TODAY. The old difficulty of obtaining suitable material has eased considerably. Policies adopted a year ago have been followed and the staff proposes to continue them in the future.

Mr. Harnwell said that he believed PHYSICS TODAY was making progress in the direction desired but had received very little evidence pro or con. Mr. Barton said that considerable study had been made of the future financial prospects for PHYSICS TODAY, as requested by the Committee, to determine when and whether we may eventually be able to send it to all Institute members. This appears to be a possibility for the future, depending on advertising revenue. So far, PHYSICS TODAY has not operated on the same basis for two consecutive years. During the last year circulation has grown slowly but advertising has not increased as desired. It is desirable to continue PHYSICS TODAY through 1952 on the same general basis as 1951 to see what can be done about increasing both circulation and advertising with the magazine sailing on a steady keel.

The Committee agreed to continue PHYSICS TODAY through 1952 on the same basis as 1951.

On recommendation of Mr. Harnwell, the following were appointed members of the Editorial Board of PHYSICS TODAY for the calendar year 1952:

  • R. D. Bennett
  • E. U. Condon
  • J. B. Fisk
  • D. E. Gray
  • W. V. Houston
  • F. V. Hunt
  • E. H. Land
  • R. V. Langmuir
  • A. W. Lawson
  • J. C. Morris
  • P. M. Morse
  • Thomas Osgood
  • L. I. Schiff
  • J. R Pierce
  • R. Smoluchowski
  • L. A. Turner

9. Report of Editors.

Editor Hutchisson recommended that, in order to cover more completely the field of applied physics, some promotion of review papers should be undertaken in the JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSICS. This would require invited papers and consequently a larger page budget. It was the consensus of the Committee that this would be desirable and it was agreed to take this into consideration when acting on page budgets.

On recommendation of Editor Hutchisson, the following Associate Editors were appointed for three year terms beginning January 1, 1952:

  • Ray E. Bolz
  • Robert D. Heidenreich
  • Roman Smoluchowski

Also on recommendation of Editor Hutchisson, Earle C. Gregg was reappointed Assistant Editor of the JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSICS for a term to December 1, 1952.

Editor Harnwell briefed his written report, copies of which were distributed. On his recommendation, the following were appointed to a three year term on the Editorial Board of the REVIEW OF SCIENTIFIC INSTRUMENTS beginning January 1, 1951:

  • R. L. Sproull
  • R. Sherr
  • R. L. Weber
  • M. L. Sands
  • E. M. Purcell
  • R. W. G. Wyckoff

There was no report from Joseph C. Mayer, Editor of the JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS.

10. Appointment of New Assistant Treasurer.

Since it is desirable that Mr. Vorburger spend full time on advertising, the Treasurer recommended changes as indicated in the following motion which was carried unanimously:

MOVED that Theodore Vorburger be appointed Advertising Manager and that Kathryn Setze be appointed Assistant Treasurer, effective immediately for terms at the pleasure of the Board.

The staff recommended that the “current account” at Bankers Trust Company be discontinued and that all checks, except payroll checks, should be drawn on the “regular account” with double signature required. This recommendation was approved and the following motion was carried unanimously:

MOVED that there be required a double signature on all checks on the “regular account” of the Institute, that Messrs. Pegram, Barton, Waterfall, Vorburger, and Miss Setze be authorized to sign checks, and that the resolution required by the bank to effect this (copy attached to official minutes) be adopted.

11. Budget.

At the request of the Treasurer, the Secretary presented copies of a statement of operations for the first nine months of 1951, a projected statement to the end of the year, and a proposed budget for 1952. It was noted that the net income for 1951 will be considerable greater than anticipated. This is due to a combination of developments, all of which have been favorable. Particularly noteworthy is the fact that circulation of the Institute Journals has increased in spite of increased subscription prices.

The proposed budget for 1952 was discussed in detail. It was the consensus of the Committee that the JAP budget should be set at 1700 pages instead of the 1600 set in the proposed budget with the understanding that not more than 1500 pages be used for non-review articles. The Committee also felt that promotion expense for PHYSICS TODAY should be increased from the proposed $500 to $1500. After some discussion, the corrected budget (copy attached) was adopted.

12. Social Security and Pension Plan.

At the last meeting the Committee authorized the Institute to take a vote of its staff on the adoption of Social Security and to apply for coverage under Social Security if the required number of employees approved. The staff was also asked to prepare a combined Social Security-AIP pension plan and submit it to the Committee. The Secretary reported that a vote had been taken and that 32 of 44 employees elected Social Security. He presented a plan for combined Social Security-AIP pension, copy attached, under which AIP pensions would be reduced by one-half of the anticipated Old Age and Survivor Insurance benefits. This plan will save the employee up to $6.00 a year depending on salary level. The cost to the AIP in 1952 will be $7954; the old AIP plan would have cost $7718 in 1952. Several employees now on the pension plan did not elect Social Security and their pensions will not be altered. After some discussion, the combination Social Security-AIP Pension plan was adopted.

13. National Science Foundation.

Paul E. Klopsteg, Assistant Director of the National Science Foundation, had asked the AIP to set up a panel to help him with appropriations. It had been suggested that the AIP Committee on Government Aided Research be asked to do this and that expenses be handled by a contract between the National Science Foundation and the AIP. Further consideration indicated that it might be better for the NSF to employ our committee members, as well as others, as consultants. The consensus of the Committee was that the most appropriate way of cooperating with the NSF would be for the AIP to send them a list of physicists, which would include members of the Committee on Government Aided Research as well as others, from which the NSF could select a panel of consultants.

14. Services to American Standards Association.

The Director reported that the AIP is represented on several projects of the American Standards Association through the Optical Society and the Acoustical Society. There are projects on drawings and abbreviations which are of direct interest to the AIP and on which the AIP should be represented. There are other committees of the American Standards Association, such as the Miscellaneous Projects Correlating Committee, on which the Institute has served or has been asked to serve but the subject matter is of no real interest to AIP. There was some discussion of the extent to which the AIP should be represented on American Standards Association committees and the Committee agreed with the Director that the Institute should ask someone who is familiar with standards activities to act as Adviser on Standards. Accordingly, it was moved, seconded, and carried that E. C. Crittenden be appointed Standards Adviser.

15. Ford Foundation.

The Director reported that the AIP Publication Board had, at a recent meeting, considered a proposal to lower the foreign subscription price of the physics journals, especially in dollar-short countries. The Board was favorable only provided that no loss would thereby be sustained. Since this could only be made the case with the aid of a subsidy, the Director and Dr. Brode were asked to approach the Ford Foundation. The approach was subsequently made, aided by suggestions from K. T. Compton. An officer of the Foundation showed some interest but as yet the approach has borne no fruit.

16. Student Sections.

The Director presented applications from Virginia Military Institute, Southeast Missouri State College, and Texas Technological College to become student sections of the AIP. All three seem to have met the requirements and their applications were approved.

The Director also presented a letter from a student at Worcester Polytechnic Institute inquiring whether the three small colleges in Worcester might join together to form one student section. The other colleges are Clark University and College of the Holy Cross. It was the consensus of the Committee that, though small, they are three good schools and a joint student section would be acceptable.

17. Tellers.

With the approval of the Committee, the Chairman appointed Messrs. Aaron Spector and Gordon E. Peterson as Tellers to count the votes for a Member-at-Large of the Governing Board to take office in February 1952.

18. Report of Meeting of Treasurers Committee.

It was reported that a meeting of the Treasurers Committee had been held at which it was agreed to increase the amount the Institute charges for collecting dues from twenty to twenty-five cents per member. This Committee also recommended that instead of prorating Institute editorial costs on the basis of the number of pages published such charges be based on composition and engraving costs. The Executive Committee agreed that this change in accounting procedure should be put into effect January 1, 1952.

19. Dates of Future Meetings.

Dates for future meetings were set as follows:

Annual MeetingSaturday, February 23, 1952
Executive Committee MeetingFriday, March 21, 1952
Governing Board MeetingSaturday, March 22, 1952

The meeting was adjourned at 4:10 p.m.