Derek Moore was born in South Shields and studied at the local grammar school, from which he gained an Exhibition to Jesus College, Cambridge. However, before going to Cambridge he did his National Service in the Royal Air Force and was stationed in Yorkshire, where one of his fellow personnel was the poet Ted Hughes. He entered Jesus College in 1951, studying for the Mathematical Tripos, which he gained in 1954, and for Part III, which he gained in 1955. He then became a research student in applied mathematics and theoretical fluid mechanics under the supervision of Dr Ian Proudman and was awarded a PhD degree of the University of Cambridge in 1958. Thereafter he held positions at the University of Bristol, the Goddard Space Flight Center, New York, California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and Imperial College, London, where he spent the major part of his career. He became distinguished for the Moore-Spiegel oscillator and the Moore singularity. Moreover he had a strong interest in jazz, which is the subject of an appreciation by Peter Batten.
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