Wednesday, February 06, 2008
Dr. Andrew H. Wallace
Dr. Andrew H. Wallace, professor emeritus of mathematics at Penn and former chair of the mathematics department (1968-71), passed away January 18 in Chania, Crete, Greece. He was 81.Born and raised in Edinburgh, Scotland, he graduated in 1946 with an MA in mathematics and physics from Edinburgh University. He earned his PhD in mathematics from St. Andrews University in 1949.After immigrating to the US in 1959, he served as professor and chair of the mathematics department at Indiana University. He then came to Penn in 1965 and stayed until his retirement in 1986. his mathematical work was mainly concentrated in topology where he produced fundamental results reported on principally in his series of papers entitled “Modifications and Cobounding Manifolds.” Here, he essentially settled in dimensions 5 and higher, the basic open problem regarding these geometric objects, though he did not push his results to an explicit statement of the solution.Dr. Wallace’s work in the topology of three dimensional spaces was groundbreaking and remains frequently cited and used to the present day.