Mechanical engineering Professor Emeritus Richard Shorthill passed away on August 2, 2012 at the age of 83.

Prior to joining to the U, he was employed at Boeing in Seattle and worked on the Viking and Apollo space programs. He is credited, along with Victor Vali, with the first experimental demonstration of the fiber optic gyroscope, for which he received the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Computer and Cognitive Science in 1999.

Shorthill was an avid skier and for many years taught skiing in the U’s program at Alta.

“Richard was a great colleague and a joy to work with,” says Tim Ameel, professor and chair of the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of Utah.

Shorthill is survived by his wife of 44 years, Ellen, his son David (Patty), daughter Ann and five grandchildren.

A viewing will be held Wednesday, August 8th from 6:00 pm to 8:00pm at Evans and Early Mortuary, 574 East 100 South, Salt Lake City. Funeral services will be held in the same location Thursday, August 9th at 10:00 a.m.

Read Prof. Shorthill’s obituary online.