The Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton has appointed J. Robert Oppenheimer, professor of mathematical physics at the University of California and war-time director of the Los Alamos Laboratories of the Manhattan Project, as director to succeed Frank Aydelotte. He will assume the directorship with the beginning of the fall term.

Dr. Oppenheimer was graduated from Harvard University in 1925 and has studied abroad at Cambridge University and at the University of Göttingen, from which he received his doctor’s degree in 1927. He is the originator of the mathematical theory which outlined the method by which energy was transmuted into matter when non-material gamma rays from thorium C were fired at terrific speed at the heart of an atom. In 1934, he was co-author of the Oppenheimer- Firry revision of Dirac’s theory of the electron, and in 1942 was put in charge of planning, organizing and directing the Los Alamos Laboratories where work done by scientists elsewhere was co-ordinated to produce the first atom bomb.

One of the country’s leading authorities on the atom bomb, Dr. Oppenheimer has since January headed the committee of scientists who advise the Atomic Energy Commission. In this capacity he helped to draft the Lilienthal-Acheson report.

Dr. Oppenheimer will be the third director of the Institute for Advanced Study, which was founded in 1939. The institute’s present director, Dr. Frank Aydelotte, reached the retirement age in 1945, but at the request of the board of directors remained in office for an additional two years.

This was originally published in the May 9, 1947 issue of PAW.