Remembering David H. Archer-Mechanical Engineering - Carnegie Mellon University

Friday, June 25, 2010

Remembering David H. Archer

Dr. David Archer, Adjunct Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the School of Architecture, passed away at the age of 82 on Thursday, June 24, 2010 at Presbyterian Hospital.

Dr. Archer had a long history with Carnegie Mellon University.  He earned a Bachelor's degree from CIT in 1948 and returned as an Assistant Professor of Chemical, Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering in 1953 after receiving his Ph.D. from University of Delaware. After being promoted to the rank of Associate Professor, he joined Westinghouse Electric Corporation in 1960.  He retired from Westinghouse in 1990 and returned to Carnegie Mellon as an Adjunct Professor shortly after that.

Dr. Archer had a distinguished career at Westinghouse spanning 30 years serving as engineer, supervising engineer, department manager and consulting engineer.  He was world-renowned for his research and development (R&D) contributions to the area of energy, including fossil and nuclear fuel processing and power generation, for which he received the Westinghouse Order of Merit in 1983. Dr. Archer was also elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1989 "for leadership in developing coal-based energy systems," and received numerous awards to support his work, particularly from the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Air Force and NASA.

Dr. Archer served on the ASME Committee in preparation for the PTC 47 Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle Performance Test Code and PTC 50 Fuel Cell Power Systems. He also served on the National Research Council Committees reviewing the U.S. DOE/NETL Vision 21 Program and overseeing the destruction of the U.S. Army's stockpile of chemical weapons.

David Archer had an extraordinary passion for research and teaching, and returned to Carnegie Mellon in 1991 to enrich young minds and conduct research.  Until recently, he was performing research full time at the Advanced Building System Integration Consortium of the School of Architecture to develop evaluation and design techniques for advanced energy supply systems for buildings. He also taught many courses, including courses in metallurgy, thermodynamics, fluid flow, heat transfer, process control, engineering analysis, energy conversion and nuclear engineering.  Recently, he taught Thermal Systems Analysis and was co-teaching our graduate-level ME Fuel Cell course every fall with John Wiss. He was a prolific scholar, having published over 85 publications and 21 patents.

Dr. Archer was the loving father of Catherine Archer, Miriam (Mac) McCann, Amy Archer and Marsi (Lance) Thrash; brother of Miriam Jeske; proud grandfather of Charles, Andy, Justine and Vivian McCann, and Jordan David, Tim and Bailey Thrash; and 6 great-grandchildren.

Dr. Archer will be truly missed as well by our department, Carnegie Mellon and the engineering community.

Please join us in expressing our deepest sympathy to Dr. Archer's family.


Information on arrangments and memorials can be found on the Trib-Live website or the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette website.