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British Industrial History

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William Benison Hird

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William Benison Hird (c1864-1946)

1946 Obituary [1]

WILLIAM BENISON HIRD, B.A., was born in Paris, and died at Fernicarry, Garelochhead, on the 13th January, 1946, in his 82nd year. He was educated at Bedford Grammar School and Trinity College, Cambridge. For many years he occupied a leading place in the electrical industry of Glasgow and the West of Scotland, spending 37 years with Mavor and Coulson, and retiring at the end of 1933 with a notable record in the development of electricity in industry. He was a pioneer in the scientific work connected with the application of electrical power to marine propulsion. At a later stage he devoted himself principally to developing the design of electric motors for mining service.

He became a Member of The Institution in 1900, serving as an ordinary member of the Scottish Centre Committee 1925-26 and 1934-37, as Vice-Chairman 1918-19, and as Chairman 1919-20. He was also actively identified with the work of the B.E.S.A. (now the B.S.I.) in arriving at standard specifications for dynamos and motors, and was at one time Lecturer in Dynamo Design at the Royal Technical College, Glasgow. Four of his numerous technical papers were published in the Journal, among which may be mentioned "Weight Efficiency of Electric Motors and of Prime Movers" (1912) and, in collaboration with J. B. Mavor, "Electrically Driven Underground Conveyors in Coal Mines, and their Economic Advantages."

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