University News

Memorial Services Set for Physics Professor Emeritus David Soule

January 10, 2018


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MACOMB, IL -- A memorial services for David Elliot Soule, professor emeritus of physics at Western Illinois University, will be held A Memorial Service for David Soule will be held at 2 p.m. Friday, Jan. 12 at California Central Coast Veterans Cemetery in Seaside, CA. Soule, 92, passed away Nov. 9 in California.

He joined the WIU physics department in 1971, where he taught for 24 years until his retirement in 1995. In 1990, with a grant from the Illinois Department of Energy and Natural Resources (IDENR), Soule developed a prototype hybrid solar collector for industrial use, which was installed on the roof of Currens Hall. His invention combined hybrid solar cell and an infrared heat mirror in a solar trough collector capable of providing a 60 percent total energy conversion. Soule was recognized by then-Illinois Gov. James Thompson and the IDENR for his work.

During his time at WIU, Soule lectured extensively on solar energy, renewable energy and energy conservation, both stateside and abroad. He was the first area resident to install solar panels on his home and he also rode a solar energy-assisted motorized bicycle. Soule received a Faculty Excellence Award in 1991.

Soule served in Germany in Patton's 3rd Army from 1942-1945, receiving a Bronze Star while in combat on the front line. He took his first job in 1955 as a physicist in the research division of Union Carbide in Cleveland, OH. In 1961, Soule took a one-year post-doctoral fellowship at Keyes College, Cambridge, and in 1966, he accepted a job at McDonnell Aviation, which later became McDonnell-Douglas in Huntington Beach, while teaching night classes at Cal State Long Beach.

After retiring from WIU, he specialized in solar energy research and taught courses related to energy and the environment. This research took him to Argonne National Research Laboratory. Soule also produced numerous published papers and several patents relating to his field of expertise.

While in Macomb, he was a member of the Prairieland Barbershop Chorus, and Wesley United Methodist Church.

Survivors include three children, Evelyn Soule, David Soule and Carolyn Soule Sugimoto; six grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Posted By: WIU News (U-Relations@wiu.edu)
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