George Heilmeier, an electrical engineer who was one of the inventors of liquid-crystal display (LCD), died April 21, 2014. He was 77.

Heilmeier graduated from Penn in 1958, and earned a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Princeton in 1962. While working at RCA Laboratories in the mid-1960s, he and others began experimenting with images created electronically by manipulating tiny liquid crystals mounted between thin layers of glass.

This liquid-crystal display ultimately resulted in thin televisions, laptop computers, video cameras, CD players, and other innovations. However, these were brought to market, not by RCA, but by Japanese manufacturers.

Heilmeier left RCA in 1970 and became the U.S. Defense Department’s top researcher helping to develop stealth aircraft and other military advances. In 1978, he joined Texas Instruments and rose to chief technical officer, bringing forth an advanced digital processor. In 1991, he became CEO and chairman of Bellcore, a research and development   company formed by regional telephone companies after the breakup of AT&T. He received the National Medal of Science in 1991, the Kyoto Prize in 2005, and is in the National Inventors Hall of Fame.

Heilmeier is survived by Janet, his wife of 52 years; a daughter; and three grandchildren.

Graduate memorials are prepared by the APGA.

Graduate Class of 1962