Joseph A. Ball, professor of mathematics in the College of Science at Virginia Tech, has been conferred the title of professor emeritus by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.
The emeritus title may be conferred on retired professors, associate professors, and administrative officers who are specially recommended to the board by Virginia Tech President Tim Sands. Nominated individuals who are approved by the board receive an emeritus certificate from the university.
A member of the university community since 1973, Ball made significant contributions in the development of a control theory known as robust control, also called H-infinity control, that allows engineers to design for and assure acceptable performance in the face of interference in measurement or sensor signals. His work in operator and systems theories was important to the field of electrical engineering. A member of the Department of Mathematics, his research received 36 years of National Science Foundation funding.
Ball published more than 240 papers on his work and presented this work in more than 160 talks in 26 countries on five continents.
In 1997, he was honored with the Virginia Tech Alumni Award for Research Excellence. In the classroom, Ball taught both undergraduate and graduate courses. He supervised 13 Ph.D. dissertations.
Ball received his bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and his master’s degree and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia.