Stanley Flatt

In Memoriam: Stanley Flatt

November 04, 2007

OSA Remembers OSA Fellow Stanley Flatté

Stanley Flatté, an OSA Fellow since 1996, died on November 4, 2007 at his home in Santa Cruz, CA.  He was 66 years old. 

Dr. Flatté, a professor emeritus and research professor of physics at the University of California, Santa Cruz, was known for his work on wave propagation that led to important contributions in the fields of atmospheric optics, ocean acoustics, and seismology.  He also made significant contributions to basic research in particle physics.

Flatté earned a B.S. in physics at the California Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in physics at the University of California at Berkeley.  Prior to joining the UCSC faculty in 1971, he worked as a research physicist at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory.  At UCSC he was affiliated with The Santa Cruz Institute for Particle Physics (SCIPP) and the Institute of Marine Sciences.  He also served as a member of the JASON Defense Advisory Panel, an independent scientific advisory group that provides consulting services to the U.S. government on matters of defense science and technology.

Flatté was a member of several professional societies and was a Fellow not only of OSA but also of the Acoustical Society of America, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Physical Society.  The Fellowships were awarded “For work in meson spectroscopy and for work in wave propagation in random media, with innovative contributions to ocean acoustics, atmospheric optics, seismology, and numerical simulation.”  Additionally, the APS Fellowship was one of a small number awarded “At Large” rather than through a specific division, in recognition of the interdisciplinary nature of Flatté’s work. 

In 1975-1976 Flatté received a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship to a write a book on Sound Transmission through a Fluctuating Ocean,” which was published in 1979 as part of the Cambridge Monographs on Mechanics series.  All told, Flatté was the author of more than 130 publications.

Flatté is survived by his wife of 41 years, Renelde, two children and six grandchildren. A memorial service was held on November 11 in Santa Cruz.


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