John W. Luce, 1946

Engineer, Inventor
John Luce earned a BS in electrical engineering at Norwich University. After graduation he was commissioned in the Army Reserves. He did a short stint at Fort Monmouth, NJ, and then joined Westinghouse Electric in Pittsburgh. He designed instruments for nuclear reactors for Navy submarines and surface ships as well as electric power generation. While at Westinghouse, he co-authored a text book The Shippingport Pressurized Water Reactor. John then transferred to Baltimore, where he designed systems for launching missiles from submarines, the first satellite navigation system, and equipment for scanning and surveying the ocean bottom. He then got married and he built his own 33 foot ocean cruising sailboat.

After 17 years with Westinghouse, he quit his job, sold the cars and house, put the furniture in storage, and cruised for two years. John and his wife covered the East Coast from Maine to Florida, and the Bahamas and Caribbean. After cruising, John worked for a number of companies, including Black & Decker and General Electric, where he designed automatic assembly machinery, plastics processing machinery, cutting-edge sonar, neutron generators, and anti-shoplifting systems. John received nine U.S. Patents, two in sonar development and seven in electric power conversion. He also published many technical papers.

John finished up his career as a tenured professor of electronics at Hillsborough Community College and taught electrical engineering at the University of South Florida. He was a registered professional engineer and was named eminent engineer by Tau Beta PI, the national engineering honor society. He also holds commercial and amateur radio operator licenses. He is a 32nd degree Mason and past master of his lodge.

Today, he spends his time as a volunteer for the retirement community he lives in and is also a volunteer at a WWII cargo ship museum in Tampa where he serves as the electrical engineer when they take the ship out for test drives. John Luce has been the recipient of the distinguished alumni award at Norwich University.

Education for Life - One Student at a Time

Vermont Academy is a coed college preparatory boarding and day school in southern Vermont, serving grades 9-12 plus a postgraduate year.