William C. Martin, a National Institute of Standards and Technology scientist whose specialties included atomic spectroscopy and atomic energy, died Sept. 15 at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington. He was 83.

The cause was pneumonia, said his son Christian Martin.

Dr. Martin, a Bethesda resident, joined the staff as a physicist at what then was the National Bureau of Standards in 1957. He retired officially in 1998 but continued working, initially as a contractor and guest researcher and then as scientist emeritus until shortly before his death.

During his career, he had been a group leader in the atomic spectroscopy unit, director of the Atomic Energy Levels Data Center and chief of the spectroscopy section. He published more than 65 papers in the field of atomic spectroscopy.

Dr. Martin was awarded the Commerce Department’s Silver and Gold medals.

William Clyde Martin was a native of Cullman, Ala., and a 1951 graduate of the University of Richmond. At Princeton University, he received a master’s degree in 1953 and a doctorate in 1956, both in physics.

He had been feature editor of the Journal of the Optical Society of America and a fellow of several scientific organizations.

His wife, Dolores Moyano, whom he married in 1959, died in 2003. Survivors include two sons, Eric B. Martin of Bethesda and Christian B. Martin of Alexandria; a sister; and a granddaughter.

— Bart Barnes