Norman Abramson

H. Norman Abramson

(Retired) Executive Vice President, Southwest Research Institute

B.S. ME 1950, Stanford University
M.S. ME 1952, Stanford University
Ph.D. EM 1956, The University of Texas at Austin

Norman Abramson retired as the Executive Vice President of Southwest Research Institute in 1991, at the completion of 35 years of service in increasingly responsible positions. During this time, he developed a nationally recognized major research and development program in solid and fluid mechanics.

Abramson’s personal contributions to problems of dynamic behavior of liquid propellants in rockets and spacecraft earned him a world-renowned reputation. He is internationally known in the field of ship structural analysis and dynamics, particularly in hydroelasticity. Besides serving as the manager or principal investigator of more than a score of significant research projects, Abramson has been extensively sought after as a technical consultant and advisor by a large number of governmental agencies and industrial concerns. He is also well known for his significant contributions to the SwRI program relating to the physical modeling of dynamic structural response.

A past chairman of both the Applied Mechanics and Underwater Engineering Divisions of ASME and technical committees on Structural Dynamics and Marine Systems of AIAA, Abramson is a Fellow of the AIAA and a Fellow and Honorary Member of the ASME. He served as Vice President, Basic Engineering of ASME (1974-78), as a member of the ASME Board of Governors (1981-82), and as a member of the AIAA Board of Directors (1978-81).

Awards received by Abramson have included the AIAA Structures, Structural Dynamics, Materials Medal (1991), the ASME Medal (1999), the AIAA Distinguished Service Award (1973), the ASME Applied Mechanics Division Award (1988) and the American Academy of Mechanics Distinguished Service Award (1992). He is a longtime member of the National Academy of Engineering and served two terms as an elected member of its governing council.

Abramson is the author of approximately 75 published research papers in engineering and scientific journals and of a well-known textbook, and he has contributed to many important monographs and other publications and industrial laboratories throughout the U.S. and Europe. He is a registered Professional Engineer.

Abramson has previously served on the ASE/EM External Advisory Board and currently resides in San Antonio, TX.