2018 Williams-Wright

The Coblentz Society is pleased to announce that the 2018 Williams-Wright Award for Industrial Spectroscopy will be presented to Charles R. (Chuck) Anderson at the Pittsburgh Conference, held February 26 - March 1, 2018 in Orlando, FL USA. 

After completing his undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering from Carnegie-Mellon University in 1968, Chuck designed and built his first FT-IR Spectrometer in 1969, prior to commercially available FT-IR systems being readily available. This FT-IR system was used to successfully support an atmospheric testing program at Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory.  This work led to the development of improved FT-IR systems sold by General Dynamics Corp. using the Nicolet computer systems. The applications of these early FT-IR systems were not well publicized as much of this work required Chuck to carry high level security clearances and could not be discussed or published. However, Chuck's technical leadership in directing suppliers of IR optics, beamsplitters, IR detectors, interferometers, applications  software and data systems made him well known and respected in the instrument business. This reputation led him to the opportunity in 1975 to lead the engineering effort at Nicolet Instrument Corporation in commercializing FT-IR spectrometers for the general analytical laboratory market. 

At Nicolet, Chuck was instrumental in the creation of the Nicolet 7199, 6000, 8000 vacuum system, MX-1, 60SX, 5DX, 20SX FT-IR spectrometers and many customer application solutions such as Quantitative Analysis, Spectral Library/Data Bases, Silicon Wafer Analysis, Automotive Exhaust Gas Analysis, GC-IR and TGA-IR. It was the complex beamsplitter coating designs he created that contributed towards the high performance the Nicolet systems were known for. During his nearly 20 year tenure, Nicolet grew to become the world market leader in FT-IR spectrometer sales.

In 1994, Chuck became the President of Spectral Systems, a manufacturer of infrared optics for FT-IR, who he continues to work for today. At Spectral Systems he was able to bring his vast knowledge of FT-IR to make Spectral Systems the world leader in infrared optics and beamsplitters for optical spectroscopy. In 2015, over 16,000 beamsplitters were supplied to FT-IR manufacturers. While successful in business and management, perhaps his greatest asset has been his high level of system understanding in how FT-IR works. He has the rare ability to diagnose the root cause of any spectral artifact or problem from simply looking at the data.