October 1, 1939

George Carruthers was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on October 1, 1939 to George Sr. and Sophia Carruthers. He was the Eldest of the four siblings. His father was a civil engineer in the United States Army Corps; His mother was a homemaker at the time. George was very interested in Science from a small age and for his passion for the profession his George Sr. encouraged him. And his father built a telescope from a mail order at the age of 10. He was a nonfiction collector and was very interested in space and rockets from early age. At the age of 12 George Jr. father passed away that was a shock to the family. Sophia picked up the children and relocated to Chicago. In Chicago Sophia received employment from the United Postal Office as a clerk. During Englewood High School attendance George entered a Science contest and won all three. He won first prize for one which was for the Telescope he and his dad built together. He was a member of the Chicago Rocket Society and would spend his time doing constructive recreation to build his passion as going to the libraries joining other clubs that fit his passions as a visionary. Upon receiving his High School Diploma in 1957 George enrolled in the University of Illinois. He focused on aerospace and engineering and astronomy. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Physics; in 1961 he re entered the University and received his masters in nuclear engineering. In 1964 he earned his PHD in Aeronautical and Astronomical Engineering.

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In 1964 he received his first job with the United States Naval research laboratory as a postdoctoral fellow with the National Science Foundation Postdoctoral program. George Jr. did two years in the program and upon completion he was employed as a full time Physicist at NRL as E.O Hurbart center for space research.


In 1969 on Nov 11th He was awarded a patent for his invention for the image converter for detecting electromagnetic radiation especially in short wave lengths. His invention in 1970 on august 21 during a rocket flight was the first detection of this invention was also used in 1972 proof that molecular hydrogen is evident in interstellar space.

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In 1970 George Jr. received the Arthur Fleming Award for his work. In 1972 the invention was used during the mission of Apollo 16 mission. This invention enabled the first time for scientist to examine the earth atmosphere for concentration of pollutants and see UV images of more than 5550 stars nebulse and galaxies. He was awarded NASA’s Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal for his work on the project. In 1980’ his invention captured the image of Haley’s comet as the comet made its course. In 1991 he invented a camera that was used in the space shuttle mission.

George Jr. is co creator of the Science and Engineers Apprentice Program which gives high school student the opportunity to work at the naval research laboratory. In 1996-1997 He was an educator in Washington D.C. public schools science teachers where he taught Earth and Space science.

In 2002 George Jr. relocated to teach earth and science at Howard University. In 2003 he was inducted into the National Inventor Hal of Fame for his contributions to the Science and Engineering field.




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