T V George

Dr. T. V. George, a brilliant scientist, extraordinary leader of research on fusion energy and a wonderful friend to countless scientists in the international science community, passed away on May 10, 2015 after a long illness.

Dr. Thycodam Varkey George, known to everyone as T.V., was born in Kerala, India. He came to the United States for his graduate work, receiving the M. S. and Ph. D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He served as a Professor at the Univ. Illinois before moving to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to become a Senior Engineer at the Westinghouse Research Laboratory. There he became interested in the rapidly-growing field of plasma physics and nuclear fusion energy. He soon took a position at the US Department of Energy (DOE) in the Washington DC area, where he served for over thirty years as a program manager. Dr. George oversaw many different research programs, but he was particularly well-known nationally and internationally for his oversight of the development of gyrotron-based, high-power Electron Cyclotron Resonance plasma heating systems. Under his leadership, the US went from developing relatively low-frequency gyrotrons at power levels of one-two hundred kilowatts to achieving megawatt power levels at the high frequencies needed for modern plasma physics research. Dr. George also served as a Program manager for fusion experiments at all size scales, from the very large to smaller, innovative confinement experiments within the US Fusion Energy Sciences Program. He retired from DOE in 2010.

Dr. George was a champion of collaboration in scientific research. He was a key member of the International Organizing Committee of this Conference from 1997 to 2012. He initiated many international exchanges, including a series of Workshops on Electron Cyclotron Heating Technology that are held directly after this Conference. Dr. George organized countless collaboration meetings between the United States and Japan, Europe, and Russia. He was on the organizing committee of the bi-annual Shenzhen Conference in China. T. V. George and his wife Achamma were gracious hosts to many visitors to the Washington, DC area for more than three decades. An invitation to the George home was a very special and festive occasion. T. V. and Achamma also traveled throughout the world, making countless friends on every continent. T.V.’s wisdom, optimism and infectious good humor will be especially remembered by the IRMMW-THz community.

Dr. T. V. George is survived by his wife, Achamma, and their three children Asha, Shobha and Sageev (wife, Donell). IOC Members – 2015