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Frank J. Lockhart 1916-2002

January 01, 2003 —

Frank J. Lockhart, Professor Emeritus of Chemical Engineering Passes Away Former Chair of USC’s Chemical Engineering Department Was 86

Frank J. Lockhart, professor emeritus of chemical engineering and former chair of the Chemical Engineering Department at USC, passed away on December 12 from complications of heart disease and diabetes. He was 86.

A resident of Harbor City, Lockhart was a member of the USC faculty from 1946 to his retirement in 1987 and he chaired the School of Engineering Department of Chemical Engineering from 1956 to 1969.
Lockhart was responsible for the engineering and technology training for the nation’s first air pollution control officers at the USC Air Pollution Control Institute between 1965 and1972. This program was triggered by the passage of the Clean Air Act in 1963 and Lockhart worked with the Schools of Public Administration, Engineering and the USC Allan Hancock Foundation to create the new institute.

“Frank Lockhart had a long and very distinguished academic career at USC. He steered the chemical engineering department through a period of growth and helped education hundreds of chemical engineers. Through his research in the design of chemical plants and his efforts in air pollution control, he made life better for all of us,” said Yannis Yortsos, associate dean for academic affairs in the School of Engineering and a professor of chemical engineering.

From 1954 to 1973, he was a member of the Southern California Advisory Committee to Selective Service System on Scientific, Engineering and Specialized Personnel.

In 1968, he received the Distinguished Faculty Award from the School of Engineering and the Engineering Alumni Association for his pollution activities, his embrace of the cooperative efforts among various schools and his work with the selective service advisory committee. He was also cited for his “deep personal concern for undergraduate and graduate students alike.”

Lockhart’s family has informed USC that in his will he made a gift to start an emergency loan fund for engineering students. The School of Engineering Office of Financial Aid will establish an endowed account in his name.

Lockhart assisted in upgrading graduate chemical engineering courses at three universities in Venezuela as a consultant to a UNESCO project in the mid-1970s.

He was named a fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineering in 1978 and in 1980, he received an Excellence in Teaching Award from the USC Associates.

His research interests focused on the design process of chemical plants, including the strategy of design and the interface between the engineer and computerized air pollution controls; mass transfer, including distillation, gas absorption and liquid extraction; and the physical properties of liquids, including predictive correlation for thermal conductivity, viscosity and density.

Before coming to USC, Lockhart worked as a chemical engineer at Humble Oil and Refining Co., Union Oil Co. and Fluor Corp. He received a bachelor’s and master’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Texas and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Michigan. He was a registered professional engineer in California. He served as a consultant to a number of oil companies and engineering contractors.

Lockhart is survived by his daughter, Sandra McGrath, of Long Beach; five grandchildren, Erin Bernau, Karen Heavin, Steven Heavin, Pamela Richards and Cheryl Zavatsky; and nine great-grandchildren. The family suggests that any donations to Lockhart’s memory can be made to The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc, P. O. Box 650309, Dallas, TX 75265-0309