SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Governor of Queensland

The Governor of Queensland is the representative in the state of Queensland of the Queen of Australia. In an analogous way to the Governor-General of Australia at the national level, the Governor performs constitutional and ceremonial functions at the state level. In particular the governor has the power to appoint and dismiss the Premier of Queensland and all other ministers in the cabinet, issue writs for the election of the state parliament; the current Governor of Queensland, Paul de Jersey, was sworn in on 29 July 2014. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Queensland Catherine Holmes, acts in the position of Governor in the governor’s absence; as from June 2014, the Queen, upon the recommendation of then-Premier Campbell Newman, accorded all current and living former governors the title'The Honourable' in perpetuity. The Governor of Queensland has resided at Government House, Brisbane since 1910; the mansion, set in 14 hectares of gardens and bushland in the Brisbane suburb of Paddington, is known as "Fernberg".

Unlike Fernberg, the original Government House was purpose-built and was used from 1862 to 1910. The office of Governor is established by the Constitution of Queensland. Section 29 of the Constitution as passed in 2001 provides that the office of Governor must exist and be appointed by the Sovereign, but parts of the earlier Constitution Act of 1867 relating to the Governor are still in force owing to the double entrenchment of them within the constitution by the government of Joh Bjelke-Petersen, who feared that the office and powers of State Governor might be abolished following the controversies of the 1975 Australian constitutional crisis at a federal level. In accordance with the conventions of the Westminster system of parliamentary government, the Governor nearly always acts on the advice of the head of the elected government, the Premier of Queensland; the Governor retains the reserve powers of the Crown, has the right to appoint and dismiss Ministers, issue pardons, dissolve Parliament.

The Queensland constitution expressly provides that the Governor is not subject to direction by any person and is not limited as to the Governor's sources of advice on the appointment or dismissal of Ministers, another provision inserted by the Bjelke-Petersen government in the wake of the 1975 federal dismissal. This provision worked against Bjelke-Petersen when, in the dying days of his government in November 1987, he tried and failed to convince Governor Sir Walter Campbell to remove several ministers to shore up his own support within Parliament; when the parliamentary wing of the National Party deposed Bjelke-Petersen and elected one of the dissident ministers, Mike Ahern, as new Leader of the National Party, Sir Joh refused to resign as Premier and Sir Walter resisted calls to dismiss him. Sir Joh elected to resign on 1 December 1987; the Governor is head of the Executive Council, a Queensland equivalent to the Federal Executive Council. The Council is composed of ministers from the government of the day.

The Chief Justice of Queensland and other judges in the Queensland judicial system are appointed by the Governor acting on the advice of the Executive Council. The first Australian- born Governor of Queensland was Lieutenant-General Sir John Lavarack, his successor, Sir Henry Abel Smith was British. All subsequent governors have been Australian-born, except for Leneen Forde, born in Canada but who emigrated to Australia at an early age. Four former governors of Queensland are alive; the most recent death of a former governor was that of Sir Walter Campbell, on 4 September 2004. Administrators and Lieutenant-Governors are deputy roles appointed to carry out the duties of the Governor when the Governor is unavailable, due to travel or illness. If one is not appointed the duties are carried out by the Chief Justice of Queensland; the following are the Administrators and Lieutenant-Governors of Queensland: Official Website of the Governor of Queensland

USS Sheliak (AKA-62)

USS Sheliak was an Andromeda-class attack cargo ship named after Beta Lyrae, a binary star system in the constellation Lyra. She was one of a handful of AKA's manned by a Coast Guard crew. USS Sheliak served as a commissioned ship for 17 months. Sheliak was laid down on 19 June 1944 under Maritime Commission contract by the Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Co. Kearny, N. J.. Searcy J. Lowrey, USCG, in command. Sheliak arrived in Hampton Roads on 14 December 1944 and underwent shakedown training there from 15 to 21 December. After repairs at Norfolk, she arrived at Bayonne, New Jersey, on 28 December to load cargo for the Pacific. Departing Bayonne on 4 January 1945, Sheliak delivered her cargo to Pearl Harbor on 25 January. From 2 to 5 February, she underwent training at Pearl Harbor. Departing Pearl Harbor on 15 February, Sheliak arrived at Tulagi on 25 February and underwent pre-invasion training there. Departing Tulagi on 15 March, she arrived at Ulithi on the 21st and sailed from there for the Okinawa invasion on 27 March.

Sheliak arrived off the beach at Okinawa on 1 April. After general unloading was ordered, she put the Tenth Army cargo ashore between 17 April. During these operations, she shot down one Japanese aircraft on 15 April. Sheliak departed Okinawa on 19 April. There, her crew altered her cargo spaces to carry ammunition, she was unloading her third cargo of ammunition at Pearl Harbor when the Pacific War ended, she returned the ammunition still on board to San Francisco. On 1 October, the cargo ship delivered 18 landing craft to California, she called at Pearl Harbor, Samar, Subic Bay, Guam before returning to San Francisco on 22 February 1946. On 15 March, she sailed from San Francisco and arrived at Norfolk, Virginia, on 3 April for deactivation. Sheliak was decommissioned on 10 May 1946, transferred to the War Shipping Administration the following day, struck from the Navy List on 21 May. Sold into mercantile service as SS Pioneer Isle in 1948, she was renamed Australian Isle in 1965 and Transluna in 1969 before being scrapped that year.

Sheliak received one battle star for her World War II service. This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships; the entry can be found here. Photo gallery of USS Sheliak at NavSource Naval History 51 Years of AKAs

William Gardner Pfann

William Gardner Pfann was an inventor and materials scientist with Bell Labs. Pfann is known for his development of zone melting, essential to the semiconductor industry; as stated in an official history of Bell Labs, "Timely invention of zone refining by W. G. Pfann... was a major contribution that helped bring the impurities in germanium and silicon under control." Pfann was born in New York City. Showing unusual facility with materials, in 1935, when he was only eighteen years of age, he started with the Chemical Research Department of Bell Labs, he had no college degree at that time, but attending night school at Cooper Union led to a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering in 1940. Pfann was involved in William Shockley's efforts with Bell Labs to use semiconductors to make devices to replace vacuum tubes; the early efforts used germanium. They made high back-voltage germanium rectifiers in 1945. Pfann devised one of the first point-contact transistors: "Specifically, W. G. Pfann had modified the Western Electric 1N26 shielded point-contact diode to include two spring-loaded cat whisker point contacts, making a three-electrode configuration with good electrical amplifying properties.

This configuration became known at the Type A transistor." He and Walter Brattain developed the process of "forming" these transistors to make them more uniform. Pfann invented a method of bonding fine gold wires to germanium that made the device functional. "The quiet, unassuming man grew in everyone's esteem as he made one valuable contribution after another to the semiconductor research effort." The zone melting process that Pfann is known for revolutionized engineering possibilities: "The purity that can be attained by zone refining was unprecedented in the history of materials processing. Impurity levels of a few parts per million had been considered excellent. In 1952, Pfann published the revelatory article "Principles of Zone-Melting" in the Transactions of the American Institute of Mining and Petroleum Engineers; this article applied zone melting in two industrial processes: purification of a solvent material, production of a uniform distribution of a solute in an ingot. Three appendices described mathematical models of the processes in zone melting.

In 1958, Pfann published the first edition of his text Zone Melting with John Wiley. A second edition appeared in 1966, in 1978 publisher Robert E. Krieger of Huntington, New York issued the third edition. In 1962, the journal Science published a short digest of the zone melting method by Pfann; this article concludes by treating the larger topic of temperature gradient zone melting. Pfann describes why a drop of gold on a germanium slab moves toward the hottest spot, he says this method was used to "make complex p-n junction shapes for special transistors". He proposes the purification of sea water. Further he notes the relation to the physics of geological formations. In 1973 Pfann was the first to receive the Gordon E. Moore Medal for Outstanding Achievement in Solid State Science and Technology. Pfann was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1975. In 1976 the American Institute of Physics awarded him the James C. McGroddy Prize for New Materials. On his passing some coworkers wrote: His energy, his high standards of honesty in experimentation and his unprejudiced approach to the new, the untried, the heretical, helped define the word scientist for a large number of his acquaintances