Lawrence Faust

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Lawrence Faust
L. Y. Faust headshot.gif
President year 1961
Membership Honorary
PhD Physics
BSc university Franklin and Marshall
PhD university University of Pennsylvania

Lawrence Y. Faust was a pioneering geophysicist. He was the 1961-1962 SEG President.

Obituary, SEG Honorary Membership 1966

Lawrence Y. Faust passed away August 19, 1966, shortly after learning of his election to Honorary Membership in the SEG. In lieu of the customary citation, President Robert Kendall asked the audience at the Kickoff Luncheon to stand in honor of the memory of Dr. Faust.

Then Mr. Kendall read the following letter, by which Dr. Faust was notified of the honor bestowed upon him.

Dear Larry:

The Society of Exploration Geophysicists and the Geophysical Society of Tulsa have bestowed upon you approximately every elective honor that membership can bestow. Additional honors over and above those available for designation by membership come with age and the passage of years.

You are, by constitutional directive as Past President of the SEG, a member of the Honors and Awards Committee and as such normally are not eligible for consideration for non-elective awards until you have completed your service on this committee.

When you went to the hospital a few weeks ago, there arose a great clamor from your friends near and far for SEG to declare and award to you immediately the honors that you would receive ultimately. This suggestion was given unanimous approval by the SEG, Executive Committee and by our fellow members of the Honors and Awards Committee. There was no dissenting vote only the expressed worry by some as to whether you would approve of this action. This worry in itself, shows the great esteem in which you are held by your contemporaries.

The purpose of this letter is to advise you that you have been elected to Honorary Membership in the Society of Exploration Geophysicists.

We are certain that this action will meet your approval. If not, we beg your forbearance and forgiveness for wanting you to know of the high place that you hold in the hearts and minds of your fellows.


SEG Executive Committee"

Biography for President Elect Candidacy, 1961 [1]

Lawrence Y. Faust, candidate for President, served as Editor of the Society from 1957 to 1959, his final issue of GEOPHYSICS being the Silver Anniversary number. Experience in SEG affairs includes Executive Committee membership under Presidents Clifford and McCollum and previous representation to the SEG Council from the Geophysical Society of Tulsa. Formerly he held the first vice-presidency and presidency of the Tulsa section and an associate editorship of GEOPHYSICS.

Dr. Faust's geophysical career began with the Sun Oil Company (1926-1927) primarily in magnetic surveys. This phase occurred between receiving a B.S. from Franklin and Marshall (1925) and Ph.D. in Physics from University of Pennsylvania (1930). He joined Geophysical Research Corporation in 1930 serving as party chief and later as supervisor. Transferred to the parent company, Amerada Petroleum Corporation, his work has been principally with seismic reflection and refraction methods but has included supervision and interpretation of some gravity and electrical surveys. At present he leads an applied research team; directs geophysical exploration in Somalia for the Sinclair Somal group; directs geophysical exploration in Tunisia for Conorada; and consults with the latter group (Oasis Oil Company of Libya) on seismic interpretation in Libya.

He has contributed papers to GEOPHYSICS, Physical Review, AAPG Bulletin, and Transactions, American Geophysical Union. One of his papers appearing in GEOPHYSICS received the Society's Best Paper Award for 1951. [2] The velocity relationships established in that paper are now frequently accepted as natural laws by other authors in the field.

Best Paper in Geophysics 1951

Larry Faust received the Best Paper in Geophysics Award in 1951 for his paper Seismic velocity as a function of depth and geologic time.


Faust, L. (1951). ”SEISMIC VELOCITY AS A FUNCTION OF DEPTH AND GEOLOGIC TIME.” GEOPHYSICS, 16(2), 192–206. doi: 10.1190/1.1437658[1]


  1. Geophysics, Vol. XXVI, No. 2, April 1961

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