Colin Robertson (left), of Invercargill, reflects on the
inaugural Douglass D. Crombie Award, named after his uncle,
and recently gained by University of Otago physics graduate
Edward Linscott. Photo by Craig Baxter.
More than 50 years after University of Otago physics
graduate Douglass Crombie undertook research at the Cavendish
Laboratory in England, a fellow Otago graduate is heading to
the same laboratory.
Edward Linscott (22) will begin PhD study at the Cambridge
University laboratory later this year with the support of a
$7000 scholarship, named after his scientific predecessor.
The Douglass D. Crombie Award is offered to an outstanding
New Zealand physics graduate intending to undertake a PhD in
physics at an overseas university.
Mr Crombie, regarded as a brilliant physicist and engineer,
was born in Alexandra in 1924 and graduated from Otago
University with a BSc and a master's degree in physics in
Mr Crombie was a New Zealand National Research Fellow at the
Cambridge University laboratory (1958-59), later becoming a
leading satellite telecommunications engineer in the United
In the 1960s, Mr Crombie undertook ground-breaking research
in radio frequency propagation over open seas, and later
joined the staff of the Institute of Telecommunication
Science, which was based in Boulder, Colorado, in the US.
He later became director of the institute before retiring
from government service in 1985.
Mr Linscott completed a BSc(hons) in physics last year and
received a Rutherford Scholarship to study at Cambridge.
Gaining the further award had come as a ''wonderful
surprise'', he said.
Mr Crombie's nephew, Colin Robertson, of Invercargill, joined
Mr Linscott at a recent function in the Otago physics
department, to mark the inaugural award. New Zealand's most
celebrated scientist, Lord Rutherford, also undertook
research at the Cavendish Laboratory, becoming its director
Mr Linscott said it was ''great to be joining the tradition''
of students from Otago and New Zealand undertaking
postgraduate studies at Cambridge.