Catt Anomaly


Further copy sent on 6aug03 slomail to Angela Bennett, i/c Professional Network, Electromagnetics, EMC, antennas and propagation.

The Catt Anomaly now figures in the Editorial of the London journal Electronics World, aug03.


Alistair Duffy,

Electromagnetics Professional Network,

IEE, Savoy Place,

London  WC2R 0BL



Every decade or so I approach IEE luminaries and ask them to resolve the problem called “The Catt Anomaly”, more properly called “The Catt Question”. This is a rudimentary question in classical electrodynamics which the IEE said came within its responsibility, see Secker in the first part of p11 of the book The Catt Anomaly, shelf number 537.8CAT in the IEE library. It can also be found on the www at


It is by now clear that the IEE lacks technical competence in this field, and also that it lacks access to technical competence in the field of classical electrodynamics. However, a duty remains, to convene a conference, as proposed on p55 et seqq. of the same book. There was no reply from the IEE to the 1995 Hock letter.


I look forward to your reply.


8nov02       Ivor Catt

121 Westfields,

St. Albans AL3 4JR,




Robin McGill, Chief Executive, IET,

Michael Faraday House


Dear Robin McGill,

In 1995 I approached the then Chief Executive of the IEE (Now IET), Dr. Williams, asking for action on "The Catt Question", then called "The Catt Anomaly". He selected Professor Secker as his expert to deal with it. Secker wrote that Electromagnetic Theory was part of the remit of the IEE. He wrote; "The Institution has a responsibility to 'promote the general advancement of electrical science and engineering and their applications and to facilitate the exchange of information and ideas on these subjects to the members of the Institution'." At first, he wrote that Sir Michael Pepper had the favoured answer. However, seven weeks later he wrote that Dr. McEwan really had the answer, which contradicted that of Pepper. Shortly thereafter Secker wrote that he was not an expert. Dr. Williams then refused to put an expert in Secker's place.

The stature of "The Catt Question" has increased considerably during the next ten years, with Nobel Prizewinner Josephson writing some 100 emails on the subject. His co-Fellow of Trinity Sir Michael Pepper has been "knighted for services to Physics". Their answers to "The Catt Question" are contradictory, with Josephson supporting Dr McEwan.

Please address the problem created by "The Catt Question"


Yours sincerely,

Ivor Catt

31 October 2008