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Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

April 16, 1952

Present: George R. Harrison (Chairman), Gaylord P. Harnwell, George B. Pegram, John C. Steinberg, Mark W. Zemansky

AIP Staff: Henry A. Barton, Wallace Waterfall, B. H. Goodfriend

1. Minutes:

On motion made and carried, the minutes of the meeting of March 14 were approved as circulated.


The Secretary presented figures showing the probable financial results of sending PHYSICS TODAY to all members in 1953. It appears that if business conditions do not change radically and if JCP, JAP, and RSI do not show a deficit, the over-all Institute deficit should not exceed about $6000. He indicated that it is planned to raise advertising rates for all journals in 1953 and that it might be desirable to employ a little professional help to prepare brochures and advise us on promotional policies.

The Committee discussed the timing of announcing plans for sending PHYSICS TODAY to all members in 1953. It was the consensus that a statement should be made at the time renewal notices are mailed but that special notice be delayed until about two weeks before the first issue is mailed or included in the first issue.

The Secretary reported that there have been some discussions about changing the page size of PHYSICS TODAY to accommodate advertisers’ standard electrotypes. He explained that while we can handle most of them at present we pay a small extra charge for this. The staff recommended that the page size be left as at present and the Committee agreed subject to change after discussion at the PHYSICS TODAY Board meeting on May 1st.

3. Societies’ Contributions to Support of AIP:

At the last meeting of the Governing Board a motion was passed to propose to the Member Societies that the basis of support of the Institute be changed so that each Member Society will contribute each year a percentage of dues collected from its individual members in the preceding year, such percentage to be fixed by the Governing Board prior to September 1 of the preceding year at a figure not greater than 12%; with the further provision that the total amount of each Society’s contribution shall be not less than $1.00 nor more than $2.00 for each Society member who is also a member of the Institute. The method of implementing this action was left to the Executive Committee. After some discussion, the following motion was made and passed:

MOVED that each Member Society be asked to designate a representative to serve on an Institute Committee whose function shall be to consider the action of the Governing Board at its March 1952 meeting and to propose a resolution to be submitted to the Member Societies for action by their governing bodies.

4. Appointment of Committees:

On motion made, seconded, and carried, the following committees were appointed for 1952:

Committee for Election of Associate Members

  • H. A. Barton
  • Wallace Waterfall

Pension Committee (for term of 3 years)

  • Wallace Waterfall
  • Eileen Neuberger
  • Kathryn Setze

AIP Representatives on Publication Board

  • H. A. Barton
  • Wallace Waterfall
  • R. F. Bryans

Committee on Physics Abstracts

  • Elmer Hutchisson (Chairman)
  • F. G. Brickwedde
  • G. B. Pegram
  • Norman Ramsey
  • G. H. Shortley

Committee on Government Aided Research

  • W. V. Houston (Chairman)
  • A. H. Compton
  • R. C. Gibbs
  • P. E. Klopsteg
  • F. W. Loomis
  • M. H. Trytten
  • M. A. Tuve
  • H. A. Barton

The Chairman was empowered to appoint a Finance Committee in consultation with the Treasurer.

5. AIP – Society Relations:

The Director expressed concern over the attitude of some officers of Member Societies toward the Institute and asked what the Institute should do to revive the cooperative feeling which existed when the Institute was founded. The sole purpose of the Institute is to serve the Member Societies and promote the welfare of physics generally and the Societies should realize it is in their interest to develop the Institute to its maximum effectiveness. After some discussion it was the consensus of the Committee that the Institute is respected generally among physicists, that there have been only such minor disagreements as are to be expected in such an organization and that no action is advisable.

6. Joint Meeting in 1956:

At its meeting on March 15, the Governing Board authorized the Executive Committee to work out details for a joint meeting in 1956. After some discussion, it was moved and carried that a reservation be made at the Penn Zone Hotels in New York City for a joint meeting between January 30 and February 10, 1956, and that each Society be asked to appoint a representative on an Institute committee for the 1956 meeting.

7. Optical Society Request for Group Rates:

The Secretary reported that he had advised the Optical Society of the decision of the Governing Board that special group rates on Institute journals applied only when they were chosen in lieu of the Society’s journal. He had received another letter from the Secretary of the Optical Society requesting further consideration of the matter. After some discussion it was the consensus of the Committee that no further action could be taken.

8. Applied Nuclear Physics in JAP:

Mr. Barton and Mr. Waterfall explained that the Institute journals are failing to take advantage of possibilities in the field of applied nuclear physics. Potential advertising in this field is substantial and is being obtained by other journals which are attempting to serve the field. Creation of a special department in one of our journals, perhaps JAP, should help reverse this trend. The Committee suggested that the Director discuss with Editor Hutchisson the possibility of appointing an associate editor to concentrate on this field.

9. Natural Sciences Manpower Commission:

Subsequent to the discussion of this subject by the Governing Board, word was received of favorable action by organizations in certain other fields of science. Mr. Barton requested more specific instructions. After some discussion, it was moved and carried that Mr. Barton be appointed the Institute’s delegate, to attend further conferences to assist in developing a plan for such a Natural Sciences Manpower Commission, and to present the resulting plan to a future meeting of the Executive Committee for consideration.

10. Instrument Congress:

Mr. Waterfall reported that the Instrument Society of America is planning an international exhibit in 1954 and has asked the Institute to participate. An arrangement is offered whereby participating societies can make a small profit by assisting in the sale of booths. A technical session might also be planned and it was suggested this might be particularly attractive to the Institute’s Affiliated Societies. It was the consensus of the Committee that these possibilities should be explored further and the staff was instructed to do so.

11. Physics Handbook:

The Secretary reported that work on the Handbook of Physics has been delayed because of the difficulty in finding an editor. Dwight Gray has now agreed to handle the job and will be able to start work on it about July 1. It is planned to sign the contract with McGraw-Hill as soon as work is under way.

12. Savings Accounts for Institute Funds:

In accordance with the suggestion of the Finance Committee that some of the Institute’s funds be placed in savings banks in various cities, the Committee discussed possible banks and cities and passed the following motion:

MOVED that the Treasurer be authorized to decide the amount of funds to be deposited in savings banks and that the five banks recommended by the Treasurer be approved as depositories for Institute funds and that the resolutions required by these banks (copies attached to official minutes) be adopted.

13. Dues for Associates:

The Secretary reported that the Governing Board had referred to the Executive Committee the question of raising dues for Associate members from $175 to $250. It was the consensus of the Committee that this is not a good time to increase these dues and it was moved, seconded, and carried that the previous action of the Committee recommending an increase be rescinded.

14. Journal of Chemical Physics:

Mr. Barton reported that the page budget for the JCP was set at 1850 pages, that 780 pages will have been published with the April issue, and that there are now 500 more pages in the Editorial Department for May and June. If publication continues at this rate, JCP will run a deficit of about $20,000 instead of breaking even as budgeted. After some discussion, the Committee recommended that the situation be explained to Editor Mayer and that he be asked to decrease the publication rate pending further action. The Committee also recommended that the Publication Board be asked to consider raising the publication charge for JCP and that the staff consider increasing the subscription price next year. No change was made in the page budget for 1952.

15. American Society for Metals:

Mr. Barton had sent members of the Committee a proposal from the American Society for Metals that the Institute become a co-sponsor or cooperating society in the establishment of an international journal of the science of metals and that the Institute handle the business end of the proposed journal. A cooperating society has no financial obligation and obtains a special subscription rate on the journal for its members. There was considerable discussion and the following motion was made, seconded, and carried:

MOVED that the Institute become a cooperating society in the establishment of a journal of the science of metals and that it be suggested that the American Society of Metals become “affiliated” with the Institute.

It was the consensus that the Institute might handle the business management of the new journal if a satisfactory arrangement can be made and the staff was instructed to investigate and report back to the Committee.

16. Future Scientists of America Foundation:

The Secretary reported receipt of a letter from R. H. Carleton, Executive Secretary of the National Science Teachers Association, regarding the Future Scientists of America Foundation and inviting the Institute to endorse the FSAF program and appoint a representative to the Board of Consultants. It was the consensus that the AAPT should be asked to look into this matter and that the Institute stands ready to do whatever may prove to be desirable in this connection.

17. Election of Associate:

The Secretary presented an application from the Nuclear Development Associates requesting Associate membership in the Institute. On motion made, seconded, and carried, Nuclear Development Associates was elected an Associate Member.

18. Date for Next Meeting:

The date for the next meeting was tentatively set for Thursday, May 29. It was understood that this meeting would be cancelled if it is found that there is no urgent business to be discussed.

The meeting was adjourned at 3 pm.