William H. Rauckhorst


William Rauckhorst

309 Kreger Hall


BA Physics, Thomas More College, 1962
PhD University of Cincinnati, 1967
Joined Miami in 1985

The OPEC Oil Embargo of 1973 was a watershed event in energy history. Amidst that so-called energy crisis, I developed an “Energy Resources: The Options” course for non-science majors that covered the usual topics in physics, but also showed applications in the various fields of energy. The course was an immediate success, and made physics more relevant to non-science majors.

Since coming to Miami University in 1985, I have continued to teach an Energy course each year. The course has been titled “Energy and Society” and more recently “Energy and Environment.”  

The energy subject itself captivated me because of the importance of energy to society, and also because of the complexity of the issues. It became the principal professional interest in my life. My wife Elaine tells our friends that I am “obsessed with the energy issue.” I take that as a compliment.
I took eighteen hours of philosophy as an undergraduate and am interested in the energy ethics subject.  During the past year, I have given a talk “Energy Ethics in an Era of Global Climate Change and Peak Oil” to a variety of community groups such as the Rotary Club, and have also written several magazine articles on the subject.