Webb, Richard C. | Purdue University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections
Born in Colorado, Richard C. Webb worked at Mountain States Telephone and Telegraph for several years before coming to Purdue as a RCA research fellow in 1939. He completed his MSEE at Purdue in 1944. While working at RCA's David Sarnoff Research Center he pursued graduate studies in physics at Princeton and returned to Purdue to complete a PhD in 1951.
Webb was a professor of electrical engineering at Iowa State College in Ames and later at the University of Denver. In 1956, Webb founded the first of three companies, the Colorado Research Corporation, a subsidiary of the Carrier Corporation. The company developed and manufactured the air conditioning control system for the first commercial jet transport aircraft, the DC8. The company also built analog computer equipment, missile range instruments, and the first secure digital video-phone system for the White House. The company merged with ITT in 1961.
Next, Webb founded Colorado Instruments, Inc., a company which began as a government research and development laboratory devoted to guided missile range instruments and later pioneered computer peripheral equipment. The company merged with Mohawk Data Sciences Corporation in 1971. Then Webb founded Data Ray Corporation. This company became a leading design consultant for high resolution computer monitors for personal computers. Webb sold the company in 1983, retired in 1985, and now limits himself to consulting and teaching.
Webb is the holder of 29 patents and has been responsible for introducing 30 different new products into the marketplace. He is a Fellow of IEEE and the recipient of the Outstanding Research Award from the RCA Laboratories in 1947 and 1949. He was named a Purdue Distinguished Engineering Alumnus in 1970 and received the Outstanding Professional Achievement Award from the University of Denver Alumni Association in 1983.