Ceramic Industry

Frechette, Professor Emeritus at Alfred University, Dies at 85

April 11, 2001
Dr. Van Derck Frechette, professor emeritus of ceramic science in the School of Ceramic Engineering and Materials Science at Alfred University, died recently at his home. He was 85.

After graduating from Alfred in 1939, Frechette earned his master's and Ph.D. degrees, also in ceramic engineering, from the University of Illinois. He was a research physicist at Corning Glass Works from 1942-44, when he returned to Alfred to begin a more than 40-year career as a teacher and researcher. He achieved international renown for himself, and for Alfred, in the field of fractography (fracture analysis of glass and ceramic materials). His book, "Failure Analysis of Brittle Materials," published in 1990, is still considered the standard reference in the field.