Weeks, emeritus professor of engineering and materials science, dies


Robert Andrew Weeks, research professor emeritus of materials science and mechanical engineering, died April 10 in Maryville, Tenn. He was 87.

Weeks was a distinguished research scientist in the field of solid state physics as well as a notable glass scientist. At the end of a 33-year career at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, he joined the Vanderbilt University School of Engineering as a research professor from 1984 to 1999, when he received the distinction of emeritus professor.

During his career, Weeks received a number of awards and honors for outstanding contributions to the science of glass and to the community of glass scientists. His biography has been included in Who’s Who in America for more than 20 years.

He was a principal investigator of NASA’s lunar materials research program and co-principal investigator for the 1981 expedition to the Libyan Desert glass site in Western Egypt sponsored by the Smithsonian Institute. He had been associate editor of the Journal of Geological Research and editor of the Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids.

Weeks was chairman of four international conferences and served on the international advisory committees of many international conferences in the field of glass science.

A native of Birmingham, Ala., he received a bachelor’s degree from Birmingham Southern College, a master’s degree from the University of Tennessee and a Ph.D. from Brown University.

Weeks was preceded in death by his son, Kevin. He is survived by his wife, Jane Sutherland Weeks; his daughter, Robin Weeks; two sons, Loren and Kerry; three grandchildren; and his sister, Joanne Knighten.