D C W Morley


Rydal School, St Andrews and Sussex Universities. B.Sc and D.Phil in optical physics. C.Phys

Thinking I could never be an academic physicist because I did not understand quantum mechanics, I started working for a hydraulic accumulator manfacturer in a company some friends and I had started. A crash course in reality.

I was then employed by ICI plc in their corporate research laboratories, I worked mainly on plastics development, this phrase covering a surprisingly wide assemblage of chemical and physical techniques. So now I did not understand both quantum mechanics and valence theory, but I was becoming a much better experimenter - you should see the chemistry set....

Later I worked on manufacturing plant which required physics, chemistry and engineering. The downside was that if you didn't get it right the plant started losing money and you got your bottom kicked. It was much more fun and led me to the first of several trips to Russia.

Subsequently I worked at Cosworth Engineering and at BAE Systems plc on the design of submarine propulsion systems. More trips to Russia; also to India, Indonesia and Korea.

I was fascinated by physics from an early age; through circumstance, I have a good knowledge of chemistry and engineering; interdisciplinary projects interest me.

I live near Preston, Lancashire in the United Kingdom.


How animals, and particularly migrating birds, manage the navigation during their migrations.

It ought to blindingly obvious how a bird can navigate from Alaska to New Zealand, or from the UK to South Africa but it's not and it bugs me. I think I have worked out part of it now, but not the whole story.

The mechanistic explanation of how phase changes take place.

I had an interest from when I was about 15 years old in how changes of phase took place. How vapours condensed, solids melted and so on.

I never thought much of the theory and realised when I actually worked on chemical plants that no one else did. If we wanted to know something about change of phase in a process, we either looked it up in something like Perry's Chemical Engineers Handbook or we went out and measured it.


It's reported that if you stare at someone they can sometimes detect this - the so-called Spider Sense.

Urban myth ? Confirmation bias ?

It seems to be a very tricky thing to prove or disprove. You have to remove,somehow, experiments that depend on an individual.

We are trying to figure out a really solid experimental protocol, but it's hard and ideas would be welcomed.




I am married to a Russian woman, speak Russian and have contacts in St Petersburg, Russia.

The attack by Russia on the Ukraine seems to be a harbinger of a deeper problem which we have ignored for far too long : Sixty percent world's population lives in democracies and the rest live under dictators. Little has been contributed to the common good by dictatorships - they live and benefit from advances made elsewhere and contribute little from their own resources. From time to time their empty authoritarianism causes conflicts to erupt.

Russia vs Ukraine in the 21st Century ? A medieval throwback launched on the whim of a senile old man.

But why have the Russians not risen up and torn Putin limb from limb ?

I think it is mostly to do with distance. In most other countries you can walk to the capital in a few days and gather a few thousand adherents for a demo. In Russia this is not possible. The distances are unimaginably vast - from Vladivostok to Moscow is 4500 miles - you can't walk it. Also until the late nineteenth century the distances precluded most communication. In the UK you can ride a horse from Cornwall to Hull in a few days, rabble rousing as you go. Not in Russia.

Distance, I think, prevented the seeds of revolt from germinating.


I am the Leader in a small Think Tank.

This has the form of a company called Tushino Ltd and it is a vehicle for the research and commercial endeavours of myself and partners.