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Stephen Ralph McEwen Porter (c1906-1934)
1934 Obituary 
STEPHEN RALPH MCEWEN PORTER, whose untimely death on 9th June 1934, at the early age of 28, cut short a career of great promise, had been engaged on research work for the London Midland and Scottish Railway since January 1931, when he was appointed assistant in the Research and Development Department. On behalf of the company's Advisory Committee on Scientific Research he carried out investigations on the wear and fracture of rails and tyres, and later studied the behaviour of locomotives on curved track. In connexion with the latter subject he submitted to the Institution a paper which was successful in gaining for him the George Stephenson Research Prize in 1933.
Mr. Porter was born in Birmingham and was educated at Clifton College. He then spent six months with the Austin Motor Company at Longbridge, and an additional brief period at the Summer Lane power station of the City of Birmingham Electrical Supply.
In 1925 he entered King's College, Cambridge, and graduated in 1928 with first-class honours in the Mechanical Sciences Tripos.
He then joined Messrs. Nydqvist and Holm, of Trollhatten, Sweden, where he was engaged in the drawing office on the design of locomotive details, and also assisted on various locomotive delivery tests.
In 1930 he returned to England and passed through the locomotive shops and running sheds of the London Midland and Scottish Railway at Derby, and was subsequently attached to the office of the chief mechanical engineer for a short period, after which he took up his appointment as research assistant.
Mr. Porter was elected a Graduate of the Institution in 1928 and was transferred to Associate Membership in 1932.