John M. Stewart University of Cambridge

By | 4th May 2017

John M. Stewart University of Cambridge

John Stewart (1943-2016)

It is with sadness that we report on the passing of John Stewart, Emeritus Reader of Gravitational Physics and Fellow of King’s College.

John Stewart was born in Pinner, west London. He was educated at Latymer Upper School and studied at Jesus College, Cambridge, receiving his BA in 1965. He became a student of Dennis Sciama and then George Ellis, graduating with his PhD from the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics (DAMTP) in 1969. From 1968-71 he was a Junior Research Fellow at Sidney Sussex College, moving then to Munich to take up a postdoctoral fellowship at the Max Planck Institute for Physics and Astrophysics. He returned to Cambridge and became a DAMTP Lecturer in 1976. He was promoted to a Senior Lectureship in 2000 and to a Readership in Gravitational Physics in 2003.

John M. Stewart University of Cambridge

For forty years, John was a member and a pillar of the Relativity and Gravitation (GR) group in DAMTP, contributing to its teaching and research activities. Throughout his career, he was universally admired as a superb lecturer by successive generations of students, due to his careful systematic style and the clarity of his explanations, as well as his sense of humour. He pioneered research in relativistic kinetic theory, cosmological perturbation theory and numerical relativity over many years in Cambridge. A number of his former graduate students continue to pursue research in relativity in academic posts around the world, including Luke Drury (Dublin IAS), Ruth Gregory (Durham), Ian Hawke (Southampton) and Oliver Rinne (Albert Einstein Institute). Research activity in numerical relativity remains vibrant in DAMTP and, of course, John was very interested in the recent LIGO announcement of the direct detection of gravitational waves.