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[09-10, 1999] 

Journal of Electrical Engineering, Vol 50, 09-10 (1999)


Norbert Frištacký - Daniel Mayer


    The field of electromagnetic theory, ferromagnetism, microwave-ferrites and technology, and non-linear electrodynamics lost a widely recognized expert. With the fall of death, at the age of 75, passed away Oldrich Benda, Professor Emeritus at the Slovak University of Technology, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, in Bratislava. Since 1948 he has been with the Department of Electromagnetic Theory at his alma mater. Gradually, he has passed all the positions starting from Assistant Professor until he became a Full Professor at SVŠT in 1963, as the first one from own university graduates. Later he took over the position of Head of Department, after his teacher Professor Kneppo, in period 1970-1986. In the age about 35 he had already held important academic office of Vice-dean, and successively of Vice-rector and Dean of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering. He was a long-term member of the Scientific Board of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, of the Scientific Board of the Slovak University of Technology, of the Scientific Board of the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics of Comenius University in Bratislava. Professor Benda was involved in the Slovak Academy of Sciences, since 1953, in the Laboratory of Electrical Engineering as one of its first members. In 1956 he was awarded the Academic Prize for invention of the Ballistic Wattsecond-meter for direct measurement of the energy supplied to welded joint using huge press-welding machines in pulse regime. After the creation of Scientific Commissions for Electrical Engineering and Technical Cybernetics of the Czechoslovak and Slovak Academy of Sciences he became a member of both, and since 1945 he acted as a Head of the newly established Scientific Association for Mathematics Physics and Electronics. Since 1970 he was a member of the Presidium of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, later, in 1974, acted as Vice-president of the Slovak Academy of Sciences and a member of the Presidium of Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences. In the frame of contemporary fundamental research he has been working as the President of the Advisory Board of the Key Research in Electronics and a Vice-president of the Advisory Board in the project Theoretical Fundamentals of Technology.
    His research work influenced considerably several domains of electrical engineering. The characteristic features of his work are the high scientific level, in many respects achievement of world priorities and orientation onto problems of utmost importance to humanity.
    The extent and quality of Professor Benda's scientific work commands respect and admiration. He has published or delivered at conferences over 250 papers, a hundred of them being published in renowned scientific journals. Each of them is a witness to the high creativity and invention of the author and many of them have received considerable response abroad, results have been included in world literature and have been cited frequently, especially during recent years.
    As a member of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences and Vice-president of the Slovak Academy of Sciences he has contributed considerably to the development of these top scientific institutions. He has received many awards of high distinction in appreciation of the multi-faceted nature of his scientific work. He has been regularly invited to be a member or honorary member of organizing committees of international conferences.

    Professor Benda was very well known also to the readers of the Journal of Electrical Engineering (former Elektrotechnický časopis) as author or coauthor of many papers and mainly, as the long time (till 1991), the Editor in Chief of this Journal. He contributed significantly to the rigorousness of the review process and to the promotion of the overall quality of the Journal, namely to its international character, even during the period in which Czechoslovakia was rather isolated from the part of world where the majority of original works in science were born.

    His sudden, untimely death on 11 July 1999 has left permanent void in the international scientific community. The friends and colleagues of Professor Oldrich Benda had to mark sad and irreplaceable loss. He made many positive to the people he touched as a friend and a professional, and his contributions will be remembered for a longer time. We are grateful to have had him among us.


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