Tagged: Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • richardmitnick 1:53 pm on December 5, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Small Lakes Keep Growing Across The Planet And It's a Serious Problem", , Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, , , , ,   

    From The University of Copenhagen [Københavns Universitet](DK) Via “Science Alert (AU)” : “Small Lakes Keep Growing Across The Planet And It’s a Serious Problem” 

    From The University of Copenhagen [Københavns Universitet](DK)

    Via

    ScienceAlert

    “Science Alert (AU)”

    12.5.22
    David Nield

    1
    Small Lake From Above (Vitali Kasporski/Getty Images)

    A new study has revealed that small lakes on Earth have expanded considerably over the last four decades – a worrying development, considering the amount of greenhouse gases freshwater reservoirs emit.

    Between 1984 and 2019, global lake surfaces increased in size by more than 46,000 square kilometers (17,761 square miles), researchers say. That’s slightly more than the area covered by Denmark.

    Carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and other gasses are constantly produced from lakes, because of the bacteria and fungi feeding at the bottom of the water, snacking on dead plants and animals that have drifted down to the lake floor.

    In total, this lake spread equates to an annual increase of carbon emissions in the region of 4.8 teragrams (or trillion grams) of CO2 – which to continue the country comparisons equals the increase in CO2 emitted by the whole of the UK in 2012.

    “There have been major and rapid changes with lakes in recent decades that affect greenhouse gas accounts, as well as ecosystems and access to water resources,” says terrestrial ecologist Jing Tang, from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

    “Among other things, our newfound knowledge of the extent and dynamics of lakes allows us to better calculate their potential carbon emissions.”

    The researchers used a combination of satellite imagery and deep learning algorithms to make their assessments on lake coverage. A total of 3.4 million lakes were logged in total.

    3
    Lake coverage across the globe, over two time periods spanning 1984-2019. (Pi et al., Nature Communications, 2022).

    Smaller lakes (less than one square kilometer or 0.39 square miles) are so important to the calculation of greenhouse gases because they produce a high volume of emissions relative to their size, the team says.

    These less expansive bodies of water account for just 15 percent of the total lake coverage, yet are responsible for a 45 percent of the increase in carbon dioxide output and 59 percent of the increase in methane emissions across the 1984 to 2019 period.

    “Small lakes emit a disproportionate amount of greenhouse gasses because they typically accumulate more organic matter, which is converted into gasses,” says Tang. “And also, because they are often shallow. This makes it easier for gasses to reach the surface and up into the atmosphere.”

    “At the same time, small lakes are much more sensitive to changes in climate and weather, as well as to human disturbances. As a result, their sizes and water chemistry fluctuate greatly. Thus, while it is important to identify and map them, it is also more demanding. Fortunately, we’ve been able to do just that.”

    More than half of the increase in lake coverage over the study period is due to human activity, the researchers say – essentially, newly constructed reservoirs. The rest is mainly due to melting glaciers and thawing permafrost, caused by the warming of our planet.

    The researchers are hoping that their data will prove useful for future climate models, with a significant chunk of greenhouse gasses potentially coming from lake surfaces as more melting and warming continues.

    “Furthermore, the dataset can be used to make better estimates of water resources in freshwater lakes and to better assess the risk of flooding, as well as for better lake management – because lake area impacts biodiversity too,” says Tang.

    The research has been published in Nature Communications.
    See the science paper for instructive material with more images.

    Fig. 1: Spatial distribution of global lakes.
    2
    Lakes with maximum surface area >0.03 km^2 were mapped, showing a lake count (total number of lakes) and b lake area density (total lake area/grid area) per 1° × 1° grid cell. The longitudinal and latitudinal lake profiles summarizing (by 1°) the lake count and lake area are shown on c and d. Statistics for small (100 km^2) lakes are presented within each panel of a and b.

    Fig. 2: Lake area changes across different periods (1980–1990s, 2000s, and 2010s).
    3
    Data were aggregated into 1° × 1° grid cells. The gray areas indicate regions with insufficient satellite coverage in the early periods; these regions were excluded from the analysis. Within each panel, the changes within and outside the glacial or permafrost regions are also presented, and the contributions of natural lakes and reservoirs are illustrated.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    U Copenhagen campus

    The University of Copenhagen [Københavns Universitet] (DK)] is a public research university in Copenhagen, Denmark. Founded in 1479, the University of Copenhagen is the second-oldest university in Scandinavia, and ranks as one of the top universities in the Nordic countries and Europe.

    Its establishment sanctioned by Pope Sixtus IV, the University of Copenhagen was founded by Christian I of Denmark as a Catholic teaching institution with a predominantly theological focus. After 1537, it became a Lutheran seminary under King Christian III. Up until the 18th century, the university was primarily concerned with educating clergymen. Through various reforms in the 18th and 19th century, the University of Copenhagen was transformed into a modern, secular university, with science and the humanities replacing theology as the main subjects studied and taught.

    The University of Copenhagen consists of six different faculties, with teaching taking place in its four distinct campuses, all situated in Copenhagen. The university operates 36 different departments and 122 separate research centres in Copenhagen, as well as a number of museums and botanical gardens in and outside the Danish capital. The University of Copenhagen also owns and operates multiple research stations around Denmark, with two additional ones located in Greenland. Additionally, The Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences and the public hospitals of the Capital and Zealand Region of Denmark constitute the conglomerate Copenhagen University Hospital.

    A number of prominent scientific theories and schools of thought are namesakes of the University of Copenhagen. The famous Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics was conceived at the Niels Bohr Institute [Niels Bohr Institutet](DK), which is part of the university. The Department of Political Science birthed the Copenhagen School of Security Studies which is also named after the university. Others include the Copenhagen School of Theology and the Copenhagen School of Linguistics.

    As of October 2020, 39 Nobel laureates and 1 Turing Award laureate have been affiliated with the University of Copenhagen as students, alumni or faculty. Alumni include one president of the United Nations General Assembly and at least 24 prime ministers of Denmark. The University of Copenhagen fosters entrepreneurship, and between 5 and 6 start-ups are founded by students, alumni or faculty members each week.

    History

    The university is a member of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), along with University of Cambridge (UK), Yale University, The Australian National University (AU), and University of California, Berkeley, amongst others. The 2016 Academic Ranking of World Universities ranks the University of Copenhagen as the best university in Scandinavia and 30th in the world, the 2016-2017 Times Higher Education World University Rankings as 120th in the world, and the 2016-2017 QS World University Rankings as 68th in the world. The university has had 9 alumni become Nobel laureates and has produced one Turing Award recipient.

    The University of Copenhagen was founded in 1479 and is the oldest university in Denmark. In 1474, Christian I of Denmark journeyed to Rome to visit Pope Sixtus IV, whom Christian I hoped to persuade into issuing a papal bull permitting the establishment of university in Denmark. Christian I failed to persuade the pope to issue the bull however and the king returned to Denmark the same year empty-handed. In 1475 Christian I’s wife Dorothea of Brandenburg Queen of Denmark made the same journey to Rome as her husband did a year before. Unlike Christian I Dorothea managed to persuade Pope Sixtus IV into issuing the papal bull. On the 19th of June, 1475 Pope Sixtus IV issued an official papal bull permitting the establishment of what was to become the University of Copenhagen.

    On the 4th of October, 1478 Christian I of Denmark issued a royal decree by which he officially established the University of Copenhagen. In this decree Christian I set down the rules and laws governing the university. The royal decree elected magistar Peder Albertsen as vice chancellor of the university and the task was his to employ various learned scholars at the new university and thereby establish its first four faculties: theology; law; medicine; and philosophy. The royal decree made the University of Copenhagen enjoy royal patronage from its very beginning. Furthermore, the university was explicitly established as an autonomous institution giving it a great degree of juridical freedom. As such the University of Copenhagen was to be administered without royal interference and it was not subject to the usual laws governing the Danish people.

    The University of Copenhagen was closed by the Church in 1531 to stop the spread of Protestantism and re-established in 1537 by King Christian III after the Lutheran Reformation and transformed into an evangelical-Lutheran seminary. Between 1675 and 1788 the university introduced the concept of degree examinations. An examination for theology was added in 1675 followed by law in 1736. By 1788 all faculties required an examination before they would issue a degree.

    In 1807 the British Bombardment of Copenhagen destroyed most of the university’s buildings. By 1836 however the new main building of the university was inaugurated amid extensive building that continued until the end of the century. The University Library (now a part of the Royal Library); the Zoological Museum; the Geological Museum; the Botanic Garden with greenhouses; and the Technical College were also established during this period.

    Between 1842 and 1850 the faculties at the university were restructured. Starting in 1842 the University Faculty of Medicine and the Academy of Surgeons merged to form the Faculty of Medical Science while in 1848 the Faculty of Law was reorganised and became the Faculty of Jurisprudence and Political Science. In 1850 the Faculty of Mathematics and Science was separated from the Faculty of Philosophy. In 1845 and 1862 Copenhagen co-hosted nordic student meetings with Lund University [Lunds universitet] (SE).

    The first female student was enrolled at the university in 1877. The university underwent explosive growth between 1960 and 1980. The number of students rose from around 6,000 in 1960 to about 26,000 in 1980 with a correspondingly large growth in the number of employees. Buildings built during this time period include the new Zoological Museum; the Hans Christian Ørsted and August Krogh Institutes; the campus centre on Amager Island; and the Panum Institute.

    The new university statute instituted in 1970 involved democratisation of the management of the university. It was modified in 1973 and subsequently applied to all higher education institutions in Denmark. The democratisation was later reversed with the 2003 university reforms. Further change in the structure of the university from 1990 to 1993 made a Bachelor’s degree programme mandatory in virtually all subjects.

    Also in 1993 the law departments broke off from the Faculty of Social Sciences to form a separate Faculty of Law. In 1994 the University of Copenhagen designated environmental studies; north–south relations; and biotechnology as areas of special priority according to its new long-term plan. Starting in 1996 and continuing to the present the university planned new buildings including for the University of Copenhagen Faculty of Humanities at Amager (Ørestaden) along with a Biotechnology Centre. By 1999 the student population had grown to exceed 35,000 resulting in the university appointing additional professors and other personnel.

    In 2003 the revised Danish university law removed faculty staff and students from the university decision process creating a top-down control structure that has been described as absolute monarchy since leaders are granted extensive powers while being appointed exclusively by higher levels in the organization.

    In 2005 the Center for Health and Society (Center for Sundhed og Samfund – CSS) opened in central Copenhagen housing the Faculty of Social Sciences and Institute of Public Health which until then had been located in various places throughout the city. In May 2006 the university announced further plans to leave many of its old buildings in the inner city of Copenhagen- an area that has been home to the university for more than 500 years. The purpose of this has been to gather the university’s many departments and faculties on three larger campuses in order to create a bigger more concentrated and modern student environment with better teaching facilities as well as to save money on rent and maintenance of the old buildings. The concentration of facilities on larger campuses also allows for more inter-disciplinary cooperation. For example the Departments of Political Science and Sociology are now located in the same facilities at CSS and can pool resources more easily.

    In January 2007 the University of Copenhagen merged with the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University and the Danish University of Pharmaceutical Science. The two universities were converted into faculties under the University of Copenhagen and were renamed as the Faculty of Life Sciences and the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences. In January 2012 the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences and the veterinary third of the Faculty of Life Sciences merged with the Faculty of Health Sciences forming the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences and the other two thirds of the Faculty of Life Sciences were merged into the Faculty of Science.

    Cooperative agreements with other universities

    The university cooperates with universities around the world. In January 2006, the University of Copenhagen entered into a partnership of ten top universities, along with the Australian National University (AU), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich [ETH Zürich] [Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich](CH), The National University of Singapore [Universiti Nasional Singapura] (SG), Peking University [北京大学](CN), University of California Berkeley , University of Cambridge (UK), University of Oxford (UK), University of Tokyo {東京大学](JP) and Yale University. The partnership is referred to as the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU).

    The Department of Scandinavian Studies and Linguistics at University of Copenhagen signed a cooperation agreement with the Danish Royal School of Library and Information Science in 2009.

     
  • richardmitnick 2:30 pm on December 3, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "A space telescope please – but a sustainable one if possible", "LIFE" (Large Interferometer For Exoplanets), , , Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, ,   

    From The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich [ETH Zürich] [Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich] (CH): “A space telescope please – but a sustainable one if possible” 

    From The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich [ETH Zürich] [Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich] (CH)

    12.2.22
    Dr. Daniel Angerhausen

    Daniel Angerhausen believes that fundamental research is essential, especially in the current crisis. Still, he wonders if we shouldn’t extend the idea of sustainability into the infinite reaches of outer space.

    “It is one of the great questions of humanity: “Are we alone in the universe?” Our generation is the first in history to have the technology capable of finding life on other planets. But at the same time, we are the generation facing the greatest challenge in history: keeping the Earth habitable for our civilization. It is the only planet in the universe where we know for sure that life exists.

    1
    The LIFE space telescope is to consist of several satellites flying in formation. The telescope uses infrared light to study the atmospheres of distant planets. (Visualisations: ETH Zürich)

    As temperatures on our planet rise and extreme weather events become more and more frequent, our team at ETH is planning a mission to search for life among the stars. I am often asked whether we have our priorities in order; whether it makes sense to spend so much (tax) money on space exploration when we have other problems on our planet to solve. But I believe there is no contradiction: fundamental research is one of the most important investments we can make in the future – especially now in these times of crisis. But we researchers also have to do our homework when it comes to sustainability.

    Here’s my example: The main goal of the upcoming space mission “LIFE” (Large Interferometer For Exoplanets), which I’m working on at ETH, is to systematically search our galactic neighborhood for planets that could contain life. LIFE will search for warm and rocky planets within a radius of about 100 light years and test their atmospheres for biosignatures such as combinations of oxygen and methane. Thanks to this new generation of telescopes, we will be able to find out if there is extraterrestrial life in our cosmic backyard.

    Research is money well spent…

    There’s a lot to be said for sticking with space exploration. It’s not like we’re shoveling millions of dollar bills into rockets just to burn them up in orbit. A large portion of the funding for scientific projects, especially at universities and colleges, goes towards training young researchers. Most of them will leave academia after graduation and make a positive contribution to society in a variety of ways.

    Another large share of the funds goes to the development of new technologies, which often lead to practical commercial applications. We can show that every dollar spent on space exploration flows back to society three to five times over – just not timed with election cycles, unfortunately. The fact that almost every one of us nowadays has a smartphone with a megapixel camera in their pocket with which to surf the internet is due largely to investments in science over the last century. If we are to have any chance at all of preventing the worst consequences of the climate catastrophe, one reason will be that we have done so much research in the past and can now apply these research results in modern technologies. In this respect, fundamental research is a bit like an old-​age pension scheme for society.

    …but must become more sustainable!

    Still, as the climate catastrophe looms, I ask myself how I can justify building a space telescope that will – as of today – probably have a fairly sizable carbon footprint. Is the question of life in outer space really so important that we will allocate some of our limited greenhouse gas budget to it? All while our planet becomes less habitable for our form of society and many other animal and plant species?

    When I talk to other researchers who feel the same way, we comfort each other with the thought that some of our research on exoplanet atmospheres may help us to better understand Earth’s atmosphere as well. That the students we teach, who learn on and from a mission like LIFE, will soon develop the technologies that will rescue us from our desperate situation. Or that our thought experiments about extraterrestrial civilizations will make us think about our own behaviour as a planetary society and take it in a new direction.

    Ideas from the scientific community in demand

    None of this is wrong, but we still need to ask how we can make a mission like LIFE – and fundamental research in general – sustainable, climate-​friendly and socially responsible. I don’t have any answers yet, but I hope that some of you reading this can contribute pieces to this vital puzzle. A first step would be a life-​cycle assessment for LIFE, perhaps with the help of other researchers from the ETH community. Do you think artificial intelligence, new materials or reforms in research funding could be the key? Do you have experience in making similar projects sustainable? If so, please get in touch. Let’s have this conversation and find some answers!

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    ETH Zurich campus

    The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich [ETH Zürich] [Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich] (CH) is a public research university in the city of Zürich, Switzerland. Founded by the Swiss Federal Government in 1854 with the stated mission to educate engineers and scientists, the school focuses exclusively on science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Like its sister institution The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne [EPFL-École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne](CH) , it is part of The Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology Domain (ETH Domain)) , part of the The Swiss Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research [EAER][Eidgenössisches Departement für Wirtschaft, Bildung und Forschung] [Département fédéral de l’économie, de la formation et de la recherche] (CH).

    The university is an attractive destination for international students thanks to low tuition fees of 809 CHF per semester, PhD and graduate salaries that are amongst the world’s highest, and a world-class reputation in academia and industry. There are currently 22,200 students from over 120 countries, of which 4,180 are pursuing doctoral degrees. In the 2021 edition of the QS World University Rankings ETH Zürich is ranked 6th in the world and 8th by the Times Higher Education World Rankings 2020. In the 2020 QS World University Rankings by subject it is ranked 4th in the world for engineering and technology (2nd in Europe) and 1st for earth & marine science.

    As of November 2019, 21 Nobel laureates, 2 Fields Medalists, 2 Pritzker Prize winners, and 1 Turing Award winner have been affiliated with the Institute, including Albert Einstein. Other notable alumni include John von Neumann and Santiago Calatrava. It is a founding member of the IDEA League and the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU) and a member of the CESAER network.

    ETH Zürich was founded on 7 February 1854 by the Swiss Confederation and began giving its first lectures on 16 October 1855 as a polytechnic institute (eidgenössische polytechnische schule) at various sites throughout the city of Zurich. It was initially composed of six faculties: architecture, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, chemistry, forestry, and an integrated department for the fields of mathematics, natural sciences, literature, and social and political sciences.

    It is locally still known as Polytechnikum, or simply as Poly, derived from the original name eidgenössische polytechnische schule, which translates to “federal polytechnic school”.

    ETH Zürich is a federal institute (i.e., under direct administration by the Swiss government), whereas The University of Zürich [Universität Zürich ] (CH) is a cantonal institution. The decision for a new federal university was heavily disputed at the time; the liberals pressed for a “federal university”, while the conservative forces wanted all universities to remain under cantonal control, worried that the liberals would gain more political power than they already had. In the beginning, both universities were co-located in the buildings of the University of Zürich.

    From 1905 to 1908, under the presidency of Jérôme Franel, the course program of ETH Zürich was restructured to that of a real university and ETH Zürich was granted the right to award doctorates. In 1909 the first doctorates were awarded. In 1911, it was given its current name, Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule. In 1924, another reorganization structured the university in 12 departments. However, it now has 16 departments.

    ETH Zürich, EPFL (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne) [École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne](CH), and four associated research institutes form The Domain of the Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology (ETH Domain) [ETH-Bereich; Domaine des Écoles polytechniques fédérales] (CH) with the aim of collaborating on scientific projects.

    Reputation and ranking

    ETH Zürich is ranked among the top universities in the world. Typically, popular rankings place the institution as the best university in continental Europe and ETH Zürich is consistently ranked among the top 1-5 universities in Europe, and among the top 3-10 best universities of the world.

    Historically, ETH Zürich has achieved its reputation particularly in the fields of chemistry, mathematics and physics. There are 32 Nobel laureates who are associated with ETH Zürich, the most recent of whom is Richard F. Heck, awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 2010. Albert Einstein is perhaps its most famous alumnus.

    In 2018, the QS World University Rankings placed ETH Zürich at 7th overall in the world. In 2015, ETH Zürich was ranked 5th in the world in Engineering, Science and Technology, just behind the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University and University of Cambridge (UK). In 2015, ETH Zürich also ranked 6th in the world in Natural Sciences, and in 2016 ranked 1st in the world for Earth & Marine Sciences for the second consecutive year.

    In 2016, Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranked ETH Zürich 9th overall in the world and 8th in the world in the field of Engineering & Technology, just behind the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, California Institute of Technology, Princeton University, University of Cambridge(UK), Imperial College London(UK) and University of Oxford(UK) .

    In a comparison of Swiss universities by swissUP Ranking and in rankings published by CHE comparing the universities of German-speaking countries, ETH Zürich traditionally is ranked first in natural sciences, computer science and engineering sciences.

    In the survey CHE Excellence Ranking on the quality of Western European graduate school programs in the fields of biology, chemistry, physics and mathematics, ETH Zürich was assessed as one of the three institutions to have excellent programs in all the considered fields, the other two being Imperial College London (UK) and the University of Cambridge (UK), respectively.

     
  • richardmitnick 9:10 pm on December 2, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Strongest Arctic cyclone on record led to surprising loss of sea ice", , , Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, , ,   

    From The University of Washington : “Strongest Arctic cyclone on record led to surprising loss of sea ice” 

    From The University of Washington

    11.29.22
    Hannah Hickey

    1
    A ship-based view of the Arctic Ocean in October 2015, when the ocean’s surface is beginning to freeze. In January, when the massive 2022 cyclone occurred, large sections of the Arctic Ocean would be covered in a layer of sea ice. Credit: Ed Blanchard-Wrigglesworth/University of Washington.

    A warming climate is causing a decline in sea ice in the Arctic Ocean, where loss of sea ice has important ecological, economic and climate impacts. On top of this long-term shift due to climate change are weather events that affect the sea ice from week to week.

    The strongest Arctic cyclone ever observed poleward of 70 degrees north latitude struck in January 2022 northeast of Greenland. A new analysis led by the University of Washington shows that while weather forecasts accurately predicted the storm, ice models seriously underestimated its impact on the region’s sea ice.

    The study, published in October in the Journal of Geophysical Research–Atmospheres [below], suggests that existing models underestimate the impact of big waves on ice floes in the Arctic Ocean.

    “The loss of sea ice in six days was the biggest change we could find in the historical observations since 1979, and the area of ice lost was 30% greater than the previous record,” said lead author Ed Blanchard-Wrigglesworth, a research assistant professor of atmospheric sciences at the UW. “The ice models did predict some loss, but only about half of what we saw in the real world.”

    Accurate sea ice forecasts are important safety tools for Northern communities, mariners and others operating in Arctic waters. The accuracy of forecasts in the Arctic Ocean also has broader effects.

    “The skill of a weather forecast in the Arctic affects the skill of weather forecasts in other places,” Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said.

    The January 2022 cyclone had the lowest pressure center estimated since satellite records began in 1979 above 70 degrees north. It was an extreme version of a typical winter storm. Climate change doesn’t appear responsible for the cyclone: The researchers didn’t find a trend in the strength of intense Arctic cyclones since 1979, and sea ice area was close to the historical normal for that region before the storm hit.


    Arctic waves.
    Waves travel through sea ice in the Arctic Ocean, as seen from a ship in October 2015. Credit: Ed Blanchard-Wrigglesworth/University of Washington.

    During the storm, record winds howled over the Arctic Ocean. The waves grew to 8 meters (26 feet) tall in open water and remained surprisingly strong as they traveled through the sea ice. The ice heaved 2 meters (6 feet) up and down near the edge of the pack, and NASA’s ICESat-2 satellite shows that the waves reached as far as 100 kilometers (60 miles) toward the center of the ice pack.

    Six days after the storm struck, the sea ice had thinned significantly in the affected waters north of Norway and Russia, in places losing more than half a meter (about 1.5 feet) of thickness.

    “It was a monster storm, and the sea ice got pummeled. And the sea ice models didn’t predict that loss, which suggests there are ways we could improve the model physics,” said second author Melinda Webster, a research assistant professor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. She begins a research position at the University of Washington Applied Physics Laboratory in the new year.

    The new analysis shows that the atmospheric heat from the storm had a small effect, meaning some other mechanism was to blame for the ice loss. Possibilities, Blanchard-Wrigglesworth suggests, include sea ice that was thinner before the storm hit than models had estimated; that the storm’s waves broke up ice floes more forcefully than models predicted as they penetrated deep into the ice pack; or that waves churned up deeper, warmer water and brought it into contact with the sea ice, melting the ice from below.

    The unexpected ice loss, despite an accurate storm forecast, suggests that this is an area where models could improve. The researchers hope to monitor future storms to pinpoint exactly what led to the dramatic sea ice loss, potentially by placing sensors in the path of a future approaching storm.

    While this storm doesn’t appear to be linked to climate change, the increase of open water as sea ice melts is allowing for larger waves that are eroding Arctic coastlines. Those waves, researchers said, could also affect the remaining sea ice pack.

    “Going into the future, this is something to keep in mind, that these extreme events might produce these episodes of huge sea ice loss,” Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said.

    Other co-authors are Linette Boisvert at NASA, Chelsea Parker at NASA and the University of Maryland and Christopher Horvat at the University of Auckland and Brown University. The research was funded by NASA, the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research and Schmidt Futures.

    Science paper:
    Journal of Geophysical Research–Atmospheres
    See the science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.
    Stem Education Coalition

    u-washington-campus

    The University of Washington is one of the world’s preeminent public universities. Our impact on individuals, on our region, and on the world is profound — whether we are launching young people into a boundless future or confronting the grand challenges of our time through undaunted research and scholarship. Ranked number 10 in the world in Shanghai Jiao Tong University rankings and educating more than 54,000 students annually, our students and faculty work together to turn ideas into impact and in the process transform lives and our world. For more about our impact on the world, every day.

    So what defines us —the students, faculty and community members at the University of Washington? Above all, it’s our belief in possibility and our unshakable optimism. It’s a connection to others, both near and far. It’s a hunger that pushes us to tackle challenges and pursue progress. It’s the conviction that together we can create a world of good. Join us on the journey.

    The University of Washington is a public research university in Seattle, Washington, United States. Founded in 1861, University of Washington is one of the oldest universities on the West Coast; it was established in downtown Seattle approximately a decade after the city’s founding to aid its economic development. Today, the university’s 703-acre main Seattle campus is in the University District above the Montlake Cut, within the urban Puget Sound region of the Pacific Northwest. The university has additional campuses in Tacoma and Bothell. Overall, University of Washington encompasses over 500 buildings and over 20 million gross square footage of space, including one of the largest library systems in the world with more than 26 university libraries, as well as the UW Tower, lecture halls, art centers, museums, laboratories, stadiums, and conference centers. The university offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees through 140 departments in various colleges and schools, sees a total student enrollment of roughly 46,000 annually, and functions on a quarter system.

    University of Washington is a member of the Association of American Universities and is classified among “R1: Doctoral Universities – Very high research activity”. According to the National Science Foundation, UW spent $1.41 billion on research and development in 2018, ranking it 5th in the nation. As the flagship institution of the six public universities in Washington state, it is known for its medical, engineering and scientific research as well as its highly competitive computer science and engineering programs. Additionally, University of Washington continues to benefit from its deep historic ties and major collaborations with numerous technology giants in the region, such as Amazon, Boeing, Nintendo, and particularly Microsoft. Paul G. Allen, Bill Gates and others spent significant time at Washington computer labs for a startup venture before founding Microsoft and other ventures. The University of Washington’s 22 varsity sports teams are also highly competitive, competing as the Huskies in the Pac-12 Conference of the NCAA Division I, representing the United States at the Olympic Games, and other major competitions.

    The university has been affiliated with many notable alumni and faculty, including 21 Nobel Prize laureates and numerous Pulitzer Prize winners, Fulbright Scholars, Rhodes Scholars and Marshall Scholars.

    In 1854, territorial governor Isaac Stevens recommended the establishment of a university in the Washington Territory. Prominent Seattle-area residents, including Methodist preacher Daniel Bagley, saw this as a chance to add to the city’s potential and prestige. Bagley learned of a law that allowed United States territories to sell land to raise money in support of public schools. At the time, Arthur A. Denny, one of the founders of Seattle and a member of the territorial legislature, aimed to increase the city’s importance by moving the territory’s capital from Olympia to Seattle. However, Bagley eventually convinced Denny that the establishment of a university would assist more in the development of Seattle’s economy. Two universities were initially chartered, but later the decision was repealed in favor of a single university in Lewis County provided that locally donated land was available. When no site emerged, Denny successfully petitioned the legislature to reconsider Seattle as a location in 1858.

    In 1861, scouting began for an appropriate 10 acres (4 ha) site in Seattle to serve as a new university campus. Arthur and Mary Denny donated eight acres, while fellow pioneers Edward Lander, and Charlie and Mary Terry, donated two acres on Denny’s Knoll in downtown Seattle. More specifically, this tract was bounded by 4th Avenue to the west, 6th Avenue to the east, Union Street to the north, and Seneca Streets to the south.

    John Pike, for whom Pike Street is named, was the university’s architect and builder. It was opened on November 4, 1861, as the Territorial University of Washington. The legislature passed articles incorporating the University, and establishing its Board of Regents in 1862. The school initially struggled, closing three times: in 1863 for low enrollment, and again in 1867 and 1876 due to funds shortage. University of Washington awarded its first graduate Clara Antoinette McCarty Wilt in 1876, with a bachelor’s degree in science.

    19th century relocation

    By the time Washington state entered the Union in 1889, both Seattle and the University had grown substantially. University of Washington’s total undergraduate enrollment increased from 30 to nearly 300 students, and the campus’s relative isolation in downtown Seattle faced encroaching development. A special legislative committee, headed by University of Washington graduate Edmond Meany, was created to find a new campus to better serve the growing student population and faculty. The committee eventually selected a site on the northeast of downtown Seattle called Union Bay, which was the land of the Duwamish, and the legislature appropriated funds for its purchase and construction. In 1895, the University relocated to the new campus by moving into the newly built Denny Hall. The University Regents tried and failed to sell the old campus, eventually settling with leasing the area. This would later become one of the University’s most valuable pieces of real estate in modern-day Seattle, generating millions in annual revenue with what is now called the Metropolitan Tract. The original Territorial University building was torn down in 1908, and its former site now houses the Fairmont Olympic Hotel.

    The sole-surviving remnants of Washington’s first building are four 24-foot (7.3 m), white, hand-fluted cedar, Ionic columns. They were salvaged by Edmond S. Meany, one of the University’s first graduates and former head of its history department. Meany and his colleague, Dean Herbert T. Condon, dubbed the columns as “Loyalty,” “Industry,” “Faith”, and “Efficiency”, or “LIFE.” The columns now stand in the Sylvan Grove Theater.

    20th century expansion

    Organizers of the 1909 Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition eyed the still largely undeveloped campus as a prime setting for their world’s fair. They came to an agreement with Washington’s Board of Regents that allowed them to use the campus grounds for the exposition, surrounding today’s Drumheller Fountain facing towards Mount Rainier. In exchange, organizers agreed Washington would take over the campus and its development after the fair’s conclusion. This arrangement led to a detailed site plan and several new buildings, prepared in part by John Charles Olmsted. The plan was later incorporated into the overall University of Washington campus master plan, permanently affecting the campus layout.

    Both World Wars brought the military to campus, with certain facilities temporarily lent to the federal government. In spite of this, subsequent post-war periods were times of dramatic growth for the University. The period between the wars saw a significant expansion of the upper campus. Construction of the Liberal Arts Quadrangle, known to students as “The Quad,” began in 1916 and continued to 1939. The University’s architectural centerpiece, Suzzallo Library, was built in 1926 and expanded in 1935.

    After World War II, further growth came with the G.I. Bill. Among the most important developments of this period was the opening of the School of Medicine in 1946, which is now consistently ranked as the top medical school in the United States. It would eventually lead to the University of Washington Medical Center, ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top ten hospitals in the nation.

    In 1942, all persons of Japanese ancestry in the Seattle area were forced into inland internment camps as part of Executive Order 9066 following the attack on Pearl Harbor. During this difficult time, university president Lee Paul Sieg took an active and sympathetic leadership role in advocating for and facilitating the transfer of Japanese American students to universities and colleges away from the Pacific Coast to help them avoid the mass incarceration. Nevertheless, many Japanese American students and “soon-to-be” graduates were unable to transfer successfully in the short time window or receive diplomas before being incarcerated. It was only many years later that they would be recognized for their accomplishments during the University of Washington’s Long Journey Home ceremonial event that was held in May 2008.

    From 1958 to 1973, the University of Washington saw a tremendous growth in student enrollment, its faculties and operating budget, and also its prestige under the leadership of Charles Odegaard. University of Washington student enrollment had more than doubled to 34,000 as the baby boom generation came of age. However, this era was also marked by high levels of student activism, as was the case at many American universities. Much of the unrest focused around civil rights and opposition to the Vietnam War. In response to anti-Vietnam War protests by the late 1960s, the University Safety and Security Division became the University of Washington Police Department.

    Odegaard instituted a vision of building a “community of scholars”, convincing the Washington State legislatures to increase investment in the University. Washington senators, such as Henry M. Jackson and Warren G. Magnuson, also used their political clout to gather research funds for the University of Washington. The results included an increase in the operating budget from $37 million in 1958 to over $400 million in 1973, solidifying University of Washington as a top recipient of federal research funds in the United States. The establishment of technology giants such as Microsoft, Boeing and Amazon in the local area also proved to be highly influential in the University of Washington’s fortunes, not only improving graduate prospects but also helping to attract millions of dollars in university and research funding through its distinguished faculty and extensive alumni network.

    21st century

    In 1990, the University of Washington opened its additional campuses in Bothell and Tacoma. Although originally intended for students who have already completed two years of higher education, both schools have since become four-year universities with the authority to grant degrees. The first freshman classes at these campuses started in fall 2006. Today both Bothell and Tacoma also offer a selection of master’s degree programs.

    In 2012, the University began exploring plans and governmental approval to expand the main Seattle campus, including significant increases in student housing, teaching facilities for the growing student body and faculty, as well as expanded public transit options. The University of Washington light rail station was completed in March 2015, connecting Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood to the University of Washington Husky Stadium within five minutes of rail travel time. It offers a previously unavailable option of transportation into and out of the campus, designed specifically to reduce dependence on private vehicles, bicycles and local King County buses.

    University of Washington has been listed as a “Public Ivy” in Greene’s Guides since 2001, and is an elected member of the American Association of Universities. Among the faculty by 2012, there have been 151 members of American Association for the Advancement of Science, 68 members of the National Academy of Sciences, 67 members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 53 members of the National Academy of Medicine, 29 winners of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, 21 members of the National Academy of Engineering, 15 Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigators, 15 MacArthur Fellows, 9 winners of the Gairdner Foundation International Award, 5 winners of the National Medal of Science, 7 Nobel Prize laureates, 5 winners of Albert Lasker Award for Clinical Medical Research, 4 members of the American Philosophical Society, 2 winners of the National Book Award, 2 winners of the National Medal of Arts, 2 Pulitzer Prize winners, 1 winner of the Fields Medal, and 1 member of the National Academy of Public Administration. Among UW students by 2012, there were 136 Fulbright Scholars, 35 Rhodes Scholars, 7 Marshall Scholars and 4 Gates Cambridge Scholars. UW is recognized as a top producer of Fulbright Scholars, ranking 2nd in the US in 2017.

    The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) has consistently ranked University of Washington as one of the top 20 universities worldwide every year since its first release. In 2019, University of Washington ranked 14th worldwide out of 500 by the ARWU, 26th worldwide out of 981 in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings, and 28th worldwide out of 101 in the Times World Reputation Rankings. Meanwhile, QS World University Rankings ranked it 68th worldwide, out of over 900.

    U.S. News & World Report ranked University of Washington 8th out of nearly 1,500 universities worldwide for 2021, with University of Washington’s undergraduate program tied for 58th among 389 national universities in the U.S. and tied for 19th among 209 public universities.

    In 2019, it ranked 10th among the universities around the world by SCImago Institutions Rankings. In 2017, the Leiden Ranking, which focuses on science and the impact of scientific publications among the world’s 500 major universities, ranked University of Washington 12th globally and 5th in the U.S.

    In 2019, Kiplinger Magazine’s review of “top college values” named University of Washington 5th for in-state students and 10th for out-of-state students among U.S. public colleges, and 84th overall out of 500 schools. In the Washington Monthly National University Rankings University of Washington was ranked 15th domestically in 2018, based on its contribution to the public good as measured by social mobility, research, and promoting public service.

     
  • richardmitnick 9:36 am on November 27, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "EUC": Equatorial Undercurrent, "The Geological Fluke That's Protecting Sea Life in the Galapagos", , , Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, , Could it be that the water offshore will become a refuge for marine animals seeking cold water in a warming world? The answer it seems is yes. At least for a while., , , , The cool water sustains populations of penguins; marine iguanas; sea lions; fur seals and cetaceans that would not be able to stay on the equator year round., The Galapagos cold pool is a product of the shape of the seafloor and the rotation of the planet—two things unlikely to change because of rising greenhouse gases., The Galapagos could become a genetic bank that could be used to reseed devastated marine ecosystems elsewhere., The Galapagos Islands are already famed for their biodiversity., The islands are in the line of an icy current that provides marine ecosystems refuge amid warming oceans. But the good news might not last for long., There are other cold pools on the planet. One in the North Atlantic just south of Greenland is caused by the weakening of a global current that carries heat north., This cooling is the product of upwelling caused by the collision of a deep ocean current against the islands lying in its path.,   

    From “WIRED“: “The Geological Fluke That’s Protecting Sea Life in the Galapagos” 

    From “WIRED“

    11.26.22
    Richard Kemeny

    The islands are in the line of an icy current that provides marine ecosystems refuge amid warming oceans. But the good news might not last for long.

    1
    Photograph: Wolfgang Kaehler/Getty Images.

    Pushed by climate change, almost every part of the ocean is heating up. But off the west coast of the Galapagos Islands, there is a patch of cold, nutrient-rich water. This prosperous patch feeds phytoplankton and breathes life into the archipelago.

    “The cool water sustains populations of penguins, marine iguanas, sea lions, fur seals, and cetaceans that would not be able to stay on the equator year round,” says Judith Denkinger, a marine ecologist at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador.

    Over the past four decades, this cold patch has cooled by roughly half a degree. Its persistence has scientists wondering how long it will hold. The Galapagos Islands are already famed for their biodiversity. Could it be that the water offshore will become a refuge for marine animals seeking cold water in a warming world? The answer, it seems, is yes. At least for a while.

    There are other cold pools on the planet. One, in the North Atlantic just south of Greenland, is caused by the weakening of a global current that carries heat north. But according to a new study [Geophysical Research Letters (below)] led by Kris Karnauskas and Donata Giglio, climate scientists at the University of Colorado-Boulder, the Galapagos cold pool is a product of the shape of the seafloor and the rotation of the planet—two things unlikely to change because of rising greenhouse gases. And the Galapagos are not the only islands seeing this effect.

    Along the equator, several islands have unusually cold water lying immediately to their west. According to Karnauskas and Giglio’s work, this cooling is the product of upwelling caused by the collision of a deep ocean current against the islands lying in its path.

    Analyzing 22 years’ worth of ocean temperature data collected by Argo floats, along with observations from satellites, ocean gliders, and cruises, the scientists constructed temperature profiles around several equatorial islands and pinpointed the location of the Equatorial Undercurrent (EUC), a cold, fast-flowing current that travels eastward about 100 meters below the surface of the Pacific Ocean. The EUC is held in place along the equator by the Coriolis force, an inertia brought on by the Earth’s spin on its axis. This same effect twists hurricanes anticlockwise north of the equator and clockwise south of it.

    Karnauskas and Giglio’s work shows that when the EUC gets within 100 kilometers west of the Galapagos Islands, it suddenly intensifies as it’s diverted upward by the islands. This causes the water to be up to 1.5 degrees Celsius cooler than the water outside this cold pool. The researchers found a similar, yet weaker, effect west of the Gilbert Islands in the western Pacific Ocean.

    In a separate study, Karnauskas shows that over the past few decades, the EUC has been getting stronger and deeper. It’s also moved about 10 kilometers south, bringing its path more in line with the Galapagos Islands. All of those changes contribute to the observed cooling, says Karnauskas.

    For the Galapagos marine ecosystem, this cooling is “a bit of a mixed bag,” says Jon Witman, a marine ecologist at Brown University in Rhode Island who was not involved in the studies. “The cool upwelled water of the EUC certainly has important positive impacts,” he says. But when combined with other oceanic processes that also cause temperatures to drop, such as La Niña, the cooling can hurt certain wildlife, such as by cold shocking corals, causing them to bleach and sometimes die.

    For the near future, this shield of cold will likely benefit life around the Galapagos Islands and other equatorial islands. But this cooling water is fighting a losing battle with a warming atmosphere, says Karnauskas. “This cooling trend probably won’t last through the century; it will eventually be overwhelmed,” he says.

    If some species are protected at least for a while, however, the Galapagos could become a genetic bank that could be used to reseed devastated marine ecosystems elsewhere, suggests Karnauskas. “And it’s just beautiful that it’s the iconic Galapagos that we’re talking about here.”

    Science paper:
    Geophysical Research Letters

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

     
  • richardmitnick 10:58 am on November 22, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Limiting Global Warming Now Can Preserve Valuable Freshwater Resource", Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, Saving snow and freshwater by curbing greenhouse gas emissions, , The need to implement wide-scale carbon mitigation strategies to maintain snowpack throughout the Americas.   

    From The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: “Limiting Global Warming Now Can Preserve Valuable Freshwater Resource” 

    From The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    11.22.22
    Theresa Duque

    Berkeley Lab researchers highlight need to implement wide-scale carbon mitigation strategies to maintain snowpack throughout the Americas.

    1
    Spring snowmelt in the Ansel Adams Wilderness of the California Sierra Nevada. New research identifies how climate change could differentially alter spring snowmelt in iconic mountain landscapes of the American Cordillera. (Credit: Image courtesy of Alan Rhoades)

    Snowcapped mountains not only look majestic – They’re vital to a delicate ecosystem that has existed for tens of thousands of years. Mountain water runoff and snowmelt flows down to streams, rivers, lakes, and oceans – and today, around a quarter of the world depends on these natural “water towers” to replenish downstream reservoirs and groundwater aquifers for urban water supplies, agricultural irrigation, and ecosystem support.

    But this valuable freshwater resource is in danger of disappearing. The planet is now around 1.1 degrees Celsius (1.9 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than pre-industrial levels, and mountain snowpacks are shrinking. Last year, a study co-led by Alan Rhoades and Erica Siirila-Woodburn, research scientists in the Earth and Environmental Sciences Area of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), found that if global warming continues along the high-emissions scenario, low-to-no-snow winters will become a regular occurrence in the mountain ranges of the western U.S. in 35 to 60 years.

    Now, in a recent Nature Climate Change [below] study, a research team led by Alan Rhoades found that if global warming reaches around 2.5 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels, mountain ranges in the southern midlatitudes, the Andean region of Chile in particular, will face a low-to-no-snow future between the years 2046 and 2051 – or 20 years earlier than mountain ranges in the northern midlatitudes such as the Sierra Nevada or Rockies. (Low-to-no-snow occurs when the annual maximum water stored as snowpack is within the bottom 30% of historical conditions for a decade or more.)

    The researchers also found that low-to-no-snow conditions would emerge in the southern midlatitudes at a third of the warming compared to the northern midlatitudes.

    “These findings are pretty shocking. We assumed that both regions in the southern and northern hemispheres would respond similarly to climate change, and that the Andes would be more resilient given its high elevation,” Rhoades said. “This shows that not every degree of warming has the same effect in one region as another.”

    In another major finding, the researchers learned that such a low-to-no-snow future coincides with roughly 10% less mountain runoff in both hemispheres, during wet and dry years.

    “If you expect 10% less runoff, that means there’s at least 10% less water available every year to refill reservoirs in the summer months when agriculture and mountain ecosystems most need it,” Rhoades said.

    Such diminished runoff would be particularly devastating for agricultural regions already parched by multiyear droughts.

    California’s current drought is entering its fourth year. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, more than 94 percent of the state is in severe, extreme, or exceptional drought. Shrinking groundwater supplies and municipal wells throughout the state are severely impacting the San Joaquin Valley, the state’s agricultural heartland.

    And Chile – which exports approximately 30% of its fresh fruit production every year, with much of it shipped to the United States – is in the midst of a historic 13-year drought.

    2
    View of the Chilean Andes (Torres del Paine National Park). (Credit: Image courtesy of Alan Rhoades)

    Saving snow and freshwater by curbing greenhouse gas emissions

    But the new study also suggests that low-to-no-snow in both the northern and southern midlatitude mountain ranges can be prevented if global warming is limited to essentially 2.5 degrees Celsius (4.5 degrees Fahrenheit), the researchers said.

    Their analysis is based on Earth system models that simulate the various components of the climate, such as the atmosphere and land surface, to identify how mountain water cycles could continue to change through the 21st century, and what warming levels might give rise to a widespread and persistent low-to-no-snow future across the American Cordillera – a chain of mountain ranges spanning the western “backbone” of North America, Central America, and South America.

    The researchers used computing resources at Berkeley Lab’s National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) to process and analyze data collected by climate researchers from all over the world through the Department of Energy’s CASCADE (Calibrated & Systematic Characterization, Attribution, & Detection of Extremes) project. (Post-analysis data from the study is available to the research community at NERSC.)

    The closest to what Rhoades and his team considered to be “episodic low-to-no snow” conditions occurred in California between 2012 to 2016. The low snow and drought conditions in these years demonstrated the vulnerability of our water supply and, in part, led to the passing of the California Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, new approaches to water and agricultural management practices, and mandatory water cuts, Rhoades said.

    3
    Alan Rhoades with his dog Luna on a backpacking trip in the Sierra Nevada (Ansel Adams Wilderness) last year. (Credit: Image courtesy of Alan Rhoades)

    Persistent low-to-no snow (10 years in a row) has yet to occur, but Rhoades said that water managers are already thinking about such a future. “They’re collaborating with scientists to come up with strategies to proactively rather than reactively manage water resources for the worst-case scenarios if we can’t mitigate greenhouse gas emissions to avoid certain warming levels. But the better strategy would be to prevent further warming by cutting greenhouse gas emissions,” he said.

    For future studies, Rhoades plans to continue to examine and run new Earth system model simulations at even higher resolution “to give more spatial context of when and where snow loss might occur and what causes it,” he said, and investigate how every degree of warming might change other key drivers of the mountain-water cycle, such as the landfall location and intensity of atmospheric rivers, and mountain ecosystem responses.

    He also plans to continue to work with water managers through the Department of Energy-funded HyperFACETS project to identify ways we can better prepare for a low-to-no snow future through new management strategies such as infrastructure hardening against drought and floods and managed aquifer recharge.

    Rhoades is optimistic, citing research from another Berkeley Lab-led study that found reaching zero net emissions of carbon dioxide from energy and industry by 2050 can be accomplished by rebuilding the U.S. energy infrastructure to run primarily on renewable energy.

    “It just requires the will and initiative to invest financial resources at the level of urgency that climate change demands, which means we need to start doing this today,” he said.

    Researchers from the Desert Research Institute in Reno, Nevada; UC Berkeley; UC Davis; California State University, Long Beach; UC Irvine; the National Center for Atmospheric Research; and Penn State University participated in the study.

    The work was supported by the DOE Office of Science and DOE Office of Biological and Environmental Research.

    NERSC is a DOE Office of Science user facility at Berkeley Lab.

    Science paper:
    Nature Climate Change
    See the science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here .

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    LBNL campus

    Bringing Science Solutions to the World

    In the world of science, The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) is synonymous with “excellence.” Thirteen Nobel prizes are associated with Berkeley Lab. Seventy Lab scientists are members of the The National Academy of Sciences, one of the highest honors for a scientist in the United States. Thirteen of our scientists have won the National Medal of Science, our nation’s highest award for lifetime achievement in fields of scientific research. Eighteen of our engineers have been elected to the The National Academy of Engineering, and three of our scientists have been elected into The Institute of Medicine. In addition, Berkeley Lab has trained thousands of university science and engineering students who are advancing technological innovations across the nation and around the world.

    Berkeley Lab is a member of the national laboratory system supported by The DOE through its Office of Science. It is managed by the University of California and is charged with conducting unclassified research across a wide range of scientific disciplines. Located on a 202-acre site in the hills above The University of California-Berkeley campus that offers spectacular views of the San Francisco Bay, Berkeley Lab employs approximately 3,232 scientists, engineers and support staff. The Lab’s total costs for FY 2014 were $785 million. A recent study estimates the Laboratory’s overall economic impact through direct, indirect and induced spending on the nine counties that make up the San Francisco Bay Area to be nearly $700 million annually. The Lab was also responsible for creating 5,600 jobs locally and 12,000 nationally. The overall economic impact on the national economy is estimated at $1.6 billion a year. Technologies developed at Berkeley Lab have generated billions of dollars in revenues, and thousands of jobs. Savings as a result of Berkeley Lab developments in lighting and windows, and other energy-efficient technologies, have also been in the billions of dollars.

    Berkeley Lab was founded in 1931 by Ernest Orlando Lawrence, a University of California-Berkeley physicist who won the 1939 Nobel Prize in physics for his invention of the cyclotron, a circular particle accelerator that opened the door to high-energy physics. It was Lawrence’s belief that scientific research is best done through teams of individuals with different fields of expertise, working together. His teamwork concept is a Berkeley Lab legacy that continues today.

    History

    1931–1941

    The laboratory was founded on August 26, 1931, by Ernest Lawrence, as the Radiation Laboratory of the University of California-Berkeley, associated with the Physics Department. It centered physics research around his new instrument, the cyclotron, a type of particle accelerator for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1939.

    LBNL 88 inch cyclotron.

    LBNL 88 inch cyclotron.

    Throughout the 1930s, Lawrence pushed to create larger and larger machines for physics research, courting private philanthropists for funding. He was the first to develop a large team to build big projects to make discoveries in basic research. Eventually these machines grew too large to be held on the university grounds, and in 1940 the lab moved to its current site atop the hill above campus. Part of the team put together during this period includes two other young scientists who went on to establish large laboratories; J. Robert Oppenheimer founded The DOE’s Los Alamos Laboratory, and Robert Wilson founded The DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

    1942–1950

    Leslie Groves visited Lawrence’s Radiation Laboratory in late 1942 as he was organizing the Manhattan Project, meeting J. Robert Oppenheimer for the first time. Oppenheimer was tasked with organizing the nuclear bomb development effort and founded today’s Los Alamos National Laboratory to help keep the work secret. At the RadLab, Lawrence and his colleagues developed the technique of electromagnetic enrichment of uranium using their experience with cyclotrons. The “calutrons” (named after the University) became the basic unit of the massive Y-12 facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Lawrence’s lab helped contribute to what have been judged to be the three most valuable technology developments of the war (the atomic bomb, proximity fuse, and radar). The cyclotron, whose construction was stalled during the war, was finished in November 1946. The Manhattan Project shut down two months later.

    1951–2018

    After the war, the Radiation Laboratory became one of the first laboratories to be incorporated into the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) (now The Department of Energy . The most highly classified work remained at Los Alamos, but the RadLab remained involved. Edward Teller suggested setting up a second lab similar to Los Alamos to compete with their designs. This led to the creation of an offshoot of the RadLab (now The DOE’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory) in 1952. Some of the RadLab’s work was transferred to the new lab, but some classified research continued at Berkeley Lab until the 1970s, when it became a laboratory dedicated only to unclassified scientific research.

    Shortly after the death of Lawrence in August 1958, the UC Radiation Laboratory (both branches) was renamed the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory. The Berkeley location became the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory in 1971, although many continued to call it the RadLab. Gradually, another shortened form came into common usage, LBNL. Its formal name was amended to Ernest Orlando Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in 1995, when “National” was added to the names of all DOE labs. “Ernest Orlando” was later dropped to shorten the name. Today, the lab is commonly referred to as “Berkeley Lab”.

    The Alvarez Physics Memos are a set of informal working papers of the large group of physicists, engineers, computer programmers, and technicians led by Luis W. Alvarez from the early 1950s until his death in 1988. Over 1700 memos are available on-line, hosted by the Laboratory.

    The lab remains owned by the Department of Energy , with management from the University of California. Companies such as Intel were funding the lab’s research into computing chips.

    Science mission

    From the 1950s through the present, Berkeley Lab has maintained its status as a major international center for physics research, and has also diversified its research program into almost every realm of scientific investigation. Its mission is to solve the most pressing and profound scientific problems facing humanity, conduct basic research for a secure energy future, understand living systems to improve the environment, health, and energy supply, understand matter and energy in the universe, build and safely operate leading scientific facilities for the nation, and train the next generation of scientists and engineers.

    The Laboratory’s 20 scientific divisions are organized within six areas of research: Computing Sciences; Physical Sciences; Earth and Environmental Sciences; Biosciences; Energy Sciences; and Energy Technologies. Berkeley Lab has six main science thrusts: advancing integrated fundamental energy science; integrative biological and environmental system science; advanced computing for science impact; discovering the fundamental properties of matter and energy; accelerators for the future; and developing energy technology innovations for a sustainable future. It was Lawrence’s belief that scientific research is best done through teams of individuals with different fields of expertise, working together. His teamwork concept is a Berkeley Lab tradition that continues today.

    Berkeley Lab operates five major National User Facilities for the DOE Office of Science:

    The Advanced Light Source (ALS) is a synchrotron light source with 41 beam lines providing ultraviolet, soft x-ray, and hard x-ray light to scientific experiments.

    The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Advanced Light Source.
    The ALS is one of the world’s brightest sources of soft x-rays, which are used to characterize the electronic structure of matter and to reveal microscopic structures with elemental and chemical specificity. About 2,500 scientist-users carry out research at ALS every year. Berkeley Lab is proposing an upgrade of ALS which would increase the coherent flux of soft x-rays by two-three orders of magnitude.

    Berkeley Lab Laser Accelerator (BELLA) Center

    The DOE Joint Genome Institute supports genomic research in support of the DOE missions in alternative energy, global carbon cycling, and environmental management. The JGI’s partner laboratories are Berkeley Lab, DOE’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), and the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology . The JGI’s central role is the development of a diversity of large-scale experimental and computational capabilities to link sequence to biological insights relevant to energy and environmental research. Approximately 1,200 scientist-users take advantage of JGI’s capabilities for their research every year.

    LBNL Molecular Foundry

    The LBNL Molecular Foundry is a multidisciplinary nanoscience research facility. Its seven research facilities focus on Imaging and Manipulation of Nanostructures; Nanofabrication; Theory of Nanostructured Materials; Inorganic Nanostructures; Biological Nanostructures; Organic and Macromolecular Synthesis; and Electron Microscopy. Approximately 700 scientist-users make use of these facilities in their research every year.

    The DOE’s NERSC National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center is the scientific computing facility that provides large-scale computing for the DOE’s unclassified research programs. Its current systems provide over 3 billion computational hours annually. NERSC supports 6,000 scientific users from universities, national laboratories, and industry.

    DOE’s NERSC National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

    Cray Cori II supercomputer at National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center at DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, named after Gerty Cori, the first American woman to win a Nobel Prize in science.

    NERSC Hopper Cray XE6 supercomputer.

    NERSC Cray XC30 Edison supercomputer.

    NERSC GPFS for Life Sciences.

    The Genepool system is a cluster dedicated to the DOE Joint Genome Institute’s computing needs. Denovo is a smaller test system for Genepool that is primarily used by NERSC staff to test new system configurations and software.

    NERSC PDSF computer cluster in 2003.

    PDSF is a networked distributed computing cluster designed primarily to meet the detector simulation and data analysis requirements of physics, astrophysics and nuclear science collaborations.

    Cray Shasta Perlmutter SC18 AMD Epyc Nvidia pre-exascale supercomputer.

    NERSC is a DOE Office of Science User Facility.

    The DOE’s Energy Science Network is a high-speed network infrastructure optimized for very large scientific data flows. ESNet provides connectivity for all major DOE sites and facilities, and the network transports roughly 35 petabytes of traffic each month.

    Berkeley Lab is the lead partner in the DOE’s Joint Bioenergy Institute (JBEI), located in Emeryville, California. Other partners are the DOE’s Sandia National Laboratory, the University of California (UC) campuses of Berkeley and Davis, the Carnegie Institution for Science , and DOE’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). JBEI’s primary scientific mission is to advance the development of the next generation of biofuels – liquid fuels derived from the solar energy stored in plant biomass. JBEI is one of three new U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Research Centers (BRCs).

    Berkeley Lab has a major role in two DOE Energy Innovation Hubs. The mission of the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP) is to find a cost-effective method to produce fuels using only sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide. The lead institution for JCAP is the California Institute of Technology and Berkeley Lab is the second institutional center. The mission of the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR) is to create next-generation battery technologies that will transform transportation and the electricity grid. DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory leads JCESR and Berkeley Lab is a major partner.

     
  • richardmitnick 11:09 am on November 18, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Urban-rural connections could boost resilience in the face of change", A global team investigated how pastoralists across six different sites in six countries – China; India; Ethiopia; Kenya; Tunisia and Italy – each deal with uncertainty., , Big cities have a lot to learn from communities that live simpler lifestyles based on livestock raising., Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, , , Neat depictions of the boundaries between town and country have existed through the ages but they are changing., There might be applications in learning from pastoralist communities around the world.   

    From “Horizon” The EU Research and Innovation Magazine : “Urban-rural connections could boost resilience in the face of change” 

    From “Horizon” The EU Research and Innovation Magazine

    11.14.22
    Andrew Dunne

    1
    Big cities have a lot to learn from communities that live simpler lifestyles based on livestock raising. Image credit: David Mark via Pixabay

    Head out of the city and escape to the countryside. Soon, the road narrows, the lights dim and the human settlements get further and further apart. You stop and listen. Silence. Urban sprawl is replaced by fields and farms. You could be in a different world.

    Such neat depictions of the boundaries between town and country have existed through the ages, but they are changing. Scattered and dispersed urban growth has created large, part-urban, part-rural peri-urban (hinterland) areas. New technologies have enabled new trends, such as people who live in the countryside and work in the city.

    If there are lessons for public officials in harnessing stronger rural-urban connections, there might also be applications in learning from pastoralist communities around the world. So said Ian Scoones, who for three decades has been leading research about what this group might teach us in terms of responding to uncertainties.

    ‘Pastoralists are livestock keepers, small-scale sheep farmers, cattle herders – people who make use of highly variable rangelands, often through mobile practices,’ said Scoones, who is Professor of Environment and Development at the Institute of Development Studies (UK) and coordinator of the EU-funded PASTRES project.

    ‘These people are marginal in terms of economics, politics, and resources, but there are hundreds of millions of them and the rangelands they make use of have nearly half the world’s land surface,’ he said. While there are few examples of pastoralists influencing policies, Scoones believes there is untapped potential.

    Blurred boundaries

    ‘Rural and urban areas are not that distinct nowadays,’ says Han Wiskerke, Professor of Rural Sociology at the University of Wageningen in The Netherlands. ‘They intersect and interact. Urban areas expand to the suburbs and there’s increased economic activity in greenbelt areas.’

    From 2017 to 2021, Wiskerke coordinated the EU-funded ROBUST project – a pan-European, EU-funded project focused on unlocking synergies between rural, urban, and peri-urban areas. A key focus was creating stronger relationships between neighboring rural-urban communities to help them envisage shared plans for sustainable growth.

    ROBUST’s Living Lab in Graz (Austria) helped increase public transport provision in peri-urban areas, driving down car use. The team achieved this by bringing together local government officials, businesses and NGOs to analyze the effects of an enhanced regional transport system on citizens’ behavior.

    ‘These areas are increasingly interconnected in terms of populations and activities, yet there is often still a divide when it comes to how policies are determined,’ said Wiskerke. ‘We looked for common areas of interest, where communities were interdependent, and tried to identify ways they might better support each another.’

    Living labs

    Through the project, ROBUST examined governance and decision-making processes in 11 city regions. Its ‘living labs’ concept spanned Europe, from Lisbon to Ljubljana. Living labs were forums which brought together politicians, researchers, businesses, service providers and citizens to co-create a local action plan.

    These were complemented by ‘communities of practice’, organized around priority topics such as business models, public infrastructure, and ecosystem services. By bringing together individuals facing similar challenges across Europe, they could share information and experiences of implementing change.

    Through the work of ROBUST’s Living Lab in Ljubljana (Slovenia), a new sustainable meal programme was offered in city schools, providing nutritious food sourced from local farms. Not only did this cut down food miles and provide opportunities for local farmers, it also enabled food literacy and education opportunities for pupils.

    And in Gloucestershire (UK), the Living Lab reduced the effects of flooding in the City of Gloucester by looking at nature-based environmental interventions in rural areas too.

    ‘This project really highlighted how if we take care of our countryside, our countryside can take care of our cities,’ said Wiskerke.

    Managing uncertainty

    The PASTRES project under Ian Scoones led a global team investigating how pastoralists across six different sites in six countries – China, India, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tunisia and Italy – each deal with uncertainty. Scoones wants to know what broader implications this might have for responding to global challenges in non-pastoralist settings.

    2
    The black tent in Golok is a symbol of pastoralism in Golok, Amdo Tibet. © Palden Tsering.

    Scoones thinks we need to look to how pastoralists organize and respond in real-time in the face of uncertainties including environmental ones. ‘This is what pastoralists do. If there’s a drought they talk to people, they move, they adapt. They don’t try to control the system,’ he said.

    Responding to environmental uncertainties is only one area where Scoones believes we can learn from pastoralists. There could also be applications for rethinking insurance and social welfare systems, and in responding to health emergencies, like the Covid-19 pandemic.

    He explained, ‘what we learnt from the pandemic is very similar to how pastoralists respond to uncertainty of a specific sort. The way the pandemic response happened most effectively was through people – informal networks who really helped to manage the uncertainty, responding, adapting, and dealing with challenges.’

    Through the PASTRES project his team of researchers – PhD students, most of them originally from pastoral areas – lived within communities carrying out qualitative and ethnographic research to understand more about people’s way of life, the challenges they faced and their decision-making in response.

    An important element of the work was a ‘photo-voice’ initiative – a research method which allowed pastoralists to record their own perspectives and reflect on their own settings. ‘We gave people cameras to document uncertainties in their lives, and they even shared images and ideas via WhatsApp,’ explained Scoones.

    Seeing Pastoralism

    These images and stories from pastoralists were shared via the website Seeing Pastoralism and an exhibition which has already been displayed in Kenya, Stockholm and as part of COP26 in Glasgow. Later this year it will reach Brussels and go on display at the European Commission.

    Back to ROBUST and longer-term, Wiskerke now hopes that by highlighting examples where positive local actions have been achieved, seeds can be sown for more integrated policymaking between rural and urban areas elsewhere.

    The final ROBUST ‘manifesto’ report calls for much greater urban / rural collaboration across all policy areas. ‘Rural and urban areas are interdependent, and I hope this project facilitates much greater collaborative policymaking between them in the future,’ said Wiskerke.

    ‘Tackling our shared challenges – from improving public services to responding to climate change – needs to be about this kind of inclusive development.’

    See the full article here .


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings
    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.


    Stem Education Coalition

     
  • richardmitnick 10:42 am on November 18, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "As climate change intensifies Europe seeks local ways to adapt", , Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, ,   

    From “Horizon” The EU Research and Innovation Magazine : “As climate change intensifies Europe seeks local ways to adapt” 

    From “Horizon” The EU Research and Innovation Magazine

    11.18.22
    Andrew Dunne

    European projects are helping cities and regions find the best ways to adjust to more frequent – and increasingly severe – heat waves, storms and floods.

    1
    Athens, one of the most densely populated cities in Europe, needs more green spaces and the means to water them to adapt to a warming climate. Image credit: Clara CALDERINI via Pixabay

    In Greece’s capital Athens, an ancient aqueduct could get a new lease of life as Europe steps up efforts to cope with global warming.

    The city plans to use a water channel built on the orders of Roman Emperor Hadrian in the second century AD to irrigate modern-day green spaces, which are being expanded to limit the impact of sweltering temperatures. The channel ran 20 kilometres underground transporting water from the foot of Mount Parnitha in northern Athens to near the centre.

    Unavoidable change

    The possible revival is part of a push across the European Union to come up with distinct local answers to an increasingly common worldwide challenge: how best to adapt to the inevitable consequences of climate change?

    ‘Athens has very little green space and this has a huge impact on our high temperatures,’ said Professor Chrysi Laspidou, who leads the EU-funded ARSINOE project on climate adaptation. ‘On a small scale, we are trying to show what might be possible by giving people a different vision.’

    As global warming intensifies, learning how to adapt to extreme weather events – including more severe heatwaves – is gaining urgency in parallel with cutting emissions that are exacerbating the climate crisis. Adaptation featured high on the agenda of this year’s COP27, the United Nations climate change summit that took place in November in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.

    Against that backdrop, this has been a year like no other. Global weather reports have been dominated by floods, storms, droughts and wildfires. In Europe, Germany was battered by hail in June and the continent as a whole then had its hottest summer on record.

    In a sign of growing attention to the challenges of adjusting to global warming, the European Commission has launched the ‘Mission on Adaptation to Climate Change‘ to support at least 150 regions and local authorities to become ready to face climate disruptions by 2030. ARSINOE is part of this initiative.

    Far and wide

    ARSINOE’s focus is far wider than Athens, bringing together 41 partners made up of industries, universities and local authorities from across Europe and beyond. From Denmark in the north to the Canary Islands in the south and the Black Sea in the east, the project is developing ‘living labs’ to tackle local and regional climate challenges.

    ‘Working with areas across Europe that are vulnerable to climate change, we are developing innovative ideas about how they might respond,’ said Laspidou, a professor at the University of Thessaly in Greece. ‘We aren’t coming in with solutions – these are decided upon through stakeholder engagement.’

    One distinctive feature of the project is its use of an online marketplace known as the ‘Climate Innovation Window’. Still in development, this portal allows local people to list the climate challenges they face – from coastal floods to wildfires – and be matched with innovative solutions being tested in the field.

    Going local

    A separate EU-funded initiative that is advancing Mission Adaptation’s goals is IMPETUS. It combines Earth observation satellite information about climate change with on-the-ground data about affected communities. The project involves residents in weighing up the best responses to a given challenge.

    ‘We are connecting diverse data and human activities in new ways to implement climate adaptation measures at a local level, which we can then scale up and modify for different regional contexts,’ said Hannah Arpke, the project coordinator and a specialist in science management and rural development at the Eurecat Technology Centre in Spain.

    The project covers test sites across Europe and brings together local residents, policymakers, businesses and partners from 32 organisations. Its demonstration sites span seven bioclimatic regions, ranging from the Mediterranean to the Arctic.

    ‘Our digital toolkit and engagement approach will allow people to define the kinds of climate scenarios they are facing, what kinds of adaptive measures they could take – such as limiting agricultural water use or raising flood barriers – and see which steps best help them to adjust,’ said the European Science Communication Institute’s Laura Durnford, who is the project’s spokesperson.

    Catalan coastline

    The 600-kilometres-long Catalan coast in north-eastern Spain is one of the demonstration sites. It’s an area that is highly vulnerable to climate change and will require a range of adaptation strategies.

    The local team will map the region’s species, classify them according to their local extinction risk and identify ways to ensure their future. It will also improve the availability of fresh water at campsites and help promote investment decisions in the region.

    A key priority for the area is recreating sand dunes and restoring wetlands in response to sea-level rise – a goal that requires Catalan businesses and regional players to forge a shared understanding of the threat and the protection the dunes and wetlands provide. This is challenging because coastal land ownership creates trade-offs, such as the desire for an unobstructed sea view, issues of access and questions over who pays.

    ‘Climate change poses a clear threat in Catalonia, but while there is goodwill towards adaptation there are also often conflicting interests and economic pressures in taking action,’ said Arpke.

    In time, the researchers believe their approach can help communities across Europe and beyond to adapt and thrive.

    Back to the future

    Meanwhile, back in Athens, ARSINOE is helping to focus minds on the immediate challenge of scorching temperatures.

    For a city that last year became the first in Europe to appoint a ‘chief heat officer’, more vegetation is a pressing need. The heat official has warned about Athens becoming uninhabitable as a result of temperature rises. Research has shown that increasing green spaces could help to reduce overall temperatures in cities by up to six degrees Celsius.

    ARSINOE is asking Athenians to report local tree cover via a common platform and using virtual reality to showcase the benefits of a greener city. The two technologies increase public awareness about climate adaptation and help researchers get a better understanding of residents’ preferred solutions.

    ARSINOE has also teamed up with local schools. Teaching students about climate change’s effects on the environment and society could pave the way for more sustainable consumer behaviour including reductions in energy use and waste – and help children to cope with global warming in the future.

    But perhaps the project’s most ambitious initiative is to revive the Hadrian aqueduct, constructed over 15 years beginning in 125 AD.

    Until the 1930s, the aqueduct served metropolitan Athens and today still contains water, which, while unsanitised, could be used for irrigation. Pipes are already being built and a water-distribution system is under development.

    ‘Greening Athens and using water from the Hadrian aqueduct would enhance our resilience in a multifaceted way at the local level,’ said Laspidou. ‘It would involve not only intervening with green spaces and alleviating heat, but also integrating local knowledge, culture and history to promote a distinct sense of identity and community.’

    See the full article here .


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings
    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.


    Stem Education Coalition

     
  • richardmitnick 9:44 pm on November 17, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Stanford study finds beavers will become a bigger boon to river water quality as U.S. West warms", , , Beaver dams can have a far greater influence than climate-driven seasonal extremes in precipitation., Beaver dams dramatically increase the removal of nitrates., Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, , , , The School of Earth & Energy & Environmental Sciences   

    From The School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences At Stanford University: “Stanford study finds beavers will become a bigger boon to river water quality as U.S. West warms” 

    1

    From The School of Earth & Energy & Environmental Sciences

    At

    Stanford University Name

    Stanford University

    11.8.22
    Adam Hadhazy

    American beaver populations are booming in the western United States as conditions grow hotter and drier. New research shows their prolific dam building benefits river water quality so much, it outweighs the damaging influence of climate-driven droughts.

    1
    A beaver dam in Inyo National Forest in the Sierra Nevada range. New research shows beavers’ dam building benefits river quality against damage from climate-driven drought. (Image credit: Getty Images)

    As climate change worsens water quality and threatens ecosystems, the famous dams of beavers may help lessen the damage.

    That is the conclusion of a new study by Stanford University scientists and colleagues, publishing Nov. 8 in Nature Communications [below]. The research reveals that when it comes to water quality in mountain watersheds, beaver dams can have a far greater influence than climate-driven, seasonal extremes in precipitation. The wooden barriers raise water levels upstream, diverting water into surrounding soils and secondary waterways, collectively called a riparian zone. These zones act like filters, straining out excess nutrients and contaminants before water re-enters the main channel downstream.

    This beneficial influence of the big, bucktoothed, amphibious rodents looks set to grow in the years ahead. Although hotter, arid conditions wrought by climate change will lessen water quality, these same conditions have also contributed to a resurgence of the American beaver in the western United States, and consequently an explosion of dam building.

    “As we’re getting drier and warmer in the mountain watersheds in the American West, that should lead to water quality degradation,” said the study’s senior author Scott Fendorf, a professor of Earth system science at Stanford University. “Yet unbeknownst to us prior to this study, the outsized influence of beaver activity on water quality is a positive counter to climate change.”

    A lucky natural experiment

    The discovery of the profound impact of beaver dams came about serendipitously. As a PhD student in Fendorf’s lab in 2017, lead study author Christian Dewey had started doing field work along the East River, a main tributary of the Colorado River near Crested Butte in central Colorado.

    Initially, Dewey had set out to track seasonal changes in hydrology, and riparian zone impacts on nutrients and contaminants in a mountainous watershed.

    “Completely by luck, a beaver decided to build a dam at our study site,” said Dewey, who is now a postdoctoral scholar at Oregon State University (whose mascot, incidentally, is a beaver). “The construction of this beaver dam afforded us the opportunity to run a great natural experiment.”

    Dams versus dry years and wet years

    For the study, Dewey and colleagues reviewed data on water levels gathered hourly by sensors installed in the river and throughout the riparian area. The team also collected water samples, including from below the ground’s surface, to monitor nutrient and contaminant levels.

    To understand how beaver dams may affect water quality in a future where global warming produces more frequent droughts and extreme swings in rainfall, the researchers compared water quality along a stretch of the East River during a historically dry year, 2018, to water quality the following year, when water levels were unusually high. They also compared these yearlong datasets to water quality during the nearly three-month period, starting in late July 2018, when the beaver dam blocked the river.

    Water quality is a measure of the suitability of water for a particular purpose – ecosystem health or human consumption, for instance. During periods of drought, as less water flows through rivers and streams, the concentrations of contaminants and excess nutrients, such as nitrogen, rise. Major downpours and seasonal snowmelt are then needed to flush out contaminants and restore water quality.

    Through their measurements and computer modeling of the interlinked biological, chemical, and physical processes that affect how contaminants become concentrated or flow downstream, the researchers found that the beaver dam dramatically increased removal of nitrate, a form of nitrogen, by creating a surprisingly steep drop between the water levels above and below the dam.

    Warm, dry summers following spring snowmelt also produce big level changes, which generate a pressure gradient that pushes water into surrounding soils. The larger the gradient, the greater the flow of water and nitrate into soils, where microbes transform nitrate into an innocuous gas.

    In the East River, the researchers found the increase in the gradient compared to an average day was at least 10 times greater with the dam than it was during the summer peak without the dam, for both the high-water year (2019) and the drought year (2018). Stated otherwise, the effects of the dam exceeded climatic hydrological extremes – in either direction of drought or abundant snowmelt – by an order of magnitude.

    “Beavers are countering water quality degradation and improving water quality by producing simulated hydrological extremes that dwarf what the climate is doing,” said Fendorf, who is the Terry Huffington Professor in the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability and a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment.

    While in place, the beaver dam boosted removal of unwanted nitrogen from the studied East River section by 44% over the seasonal extremes. Nitrogen is an especially pernicious problem for water quality as it promotes overgrowth of algae, which when decomposed starve water of the oxygen needed to support diverse animal life and a healthy ecosystem.

    The study is a reminder that as the future impacts of climate change are holistically assessed, feedback from changes in ecosystems must also be included.

    “We would expect climate change to induce hydrological extremes and degradation of water quality during drought periods,” said Fendorf, “and in this study, we’re seeing that would have indeed been true if it weren’t for this other ecological change taking place, which is the beavers, their proliferating dams, and their growing populations.”

    Science paper:
    Nature Communications
    See the science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here.


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings
    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition


    The Stanford University School of Earth, Energy, and Environmental Sciences

    The School of Earth, Energy, and Environmental Sciences

    <a href="http://“>The School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences (formerly the School of Earth Sciences) lists courses under the subject code EARTH on the Stanford Bulletin’s ExploreCourses web site. Courses offered by the School’s departments and inter-departmental programs are linked on their separate sections, and are available at the ExploreCourses web site.

    The School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences includes the departments of Geological Sciences, Geophysics, Energy Resources Engineering, and Earth System Science; and three interdisciplinary programs: the Earth Systems undergraduate B.S. and coterminal M.A. and M.S. programs, the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources (E-IPER) with Ph.D. and joint M.S, and the Sustainability and Science Practice Program with coterminal M.A. and M.S. programs.

    The aims of the school and its programs are:

    to prepare students for careers in the fields of agricultural science and policy, biogeochemistry, climate science, energy resource engineering, environmental science and policy, environmental communications, geology, geobiology, geochemistry, geomechanics, geophysics, geostatistics, sustainability science, hydrogeology, land science, oceanography, paleontology, petroleum engineering, and petroleum geology;

    to conduct disciplinary and interdisciplinary research on a range of questions related to Earth, its resources and its environment;

    to provide opportunities for Stanford undergraduate and graduate students to learn about the planet’s history, to understand the energy and resource bases that support humanity, to address the geological and geophysical, and human-caused hazards that affect human societies, and to understand the challenges and develop solutions related to environment and sustainability.

    To accomplish these objectives, the school offers a variety of programs adaptable to the needs of the individual student:

    four-year undergraduate programs leading to the degree of Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

    five-year programs leading to the coterminal Bachelor of Science and Master of Science (M.S.)

    five-year programs leading to the coterminal Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts (M.A.)

    graduate programs offering the degrees of Master of Science, Engineer, and Doctor of Philosophy.

    Details of individual degree programs are found in the section for each department or program.
    Undergraduate Programs in the School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences

    Any undergraduate admitted to the University may declare a major in one of the school’s departments or the Earth Systems Program by contacting the appropriate department or program office.

    Requirements for the B.S. degree are listed in each department or program section. Departmental academic advisers work with students to define a career or academic goal and assure that the student’s curricular choices are appropriate to the pursuit of that goal. Advisers can help devise a sensible and enjoyable course of study that meets degree requirements and provides the student with opportunities to experience advanced courses, seminars, and research projects. To maximize such opportunities, students are encouraged to complete basic science and mathematics courses in high school or during their freshman year.
    Coterminal Master’s Degrees in the School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences

    The Stanford coterminal degree program enables an undergraduate to embark on an integrated program of study leading to the master’s degree before requirements for the bachelor’s degree have been completed. This may result in more expeditious progress towards the advanced degree than would otherwise be possible, making the program especially important to Earth scientists because the master’s degree provides an excellent basis for entry into the profession. The coterminal plan permits students to apply for admission to a master’s program after earning 120 units, completion of six non-summer quarters, and declaration of an undergraduate major, but no later than the quarter prior to the expected completion of the undergraduate degree.

    The student may meet the degree requirements in the more advantageous of the following two ways: by first completing the 180 units required for the B.S. degree and then completing the three quarters required for the M.S. or the M.A. degree; or by completing a total of 15 quarters during which the requirements for the two degrees are completed concurrently. In either case, the student has the option of receiving the B.S. degree upon meeting all the B.S. requirements or of receiving both degrees at the end of the coterminal program.

    Students earn degrees in the same department or program, in two different departments, or even in different schools; for example, a B.S. in Physics and an M.S. in Geological Sciences. Students are encouraged to discuss the coterminal program with their advisers during their junior year. Additional information is available in the individual department offices.

    University requirements for the coterminal master’s degree are described in the “Coterminal Master’s Program” section. University requirements for the master’s degree are described in the “Graduate Degrees” section of this bulletin.
    Graduate Programs in the School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences

    Admission to the Graduate Program

    A student who wishes to enroll for graduate work in the school must be qualified for graduate standing in the University and also must be accepted by one of the school’s four departments or the E-IPER Ph.D. program. One requirement for admission is submission of scores on the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Exam. Admission to one department of the school does not guarantee admission to other departments.

    Faculty Adviser

    Upon entering a graduate program, the student should report to the head of the department or program who arranges with a member of the faculty to act as the student’s adviser. Alternatively, in several of the departments, advisers are established through student-faculty discussions prior to admission. The student, in consultation with the adviser(s), then arranges a course of study for the first quarter and ultimately develops a complete plan of study for the degree sought.

    Financial Aid
    Detailed information on scholarships, fellowships, and research grants is available from the school’s individual departments and programs.

    Stanford University campus

    Leland and Jane Stanford founded Stanford University to “promote the public welfare by exercising an influence on behalf of humanity and civilization.” Stanford opened its doors in 1891, and more than a century later, it remains dedicated to finding solutions to the great challenges of the day and to preparing our students for leadership in today’s complex world. Stanford, is an American private research university located in Stanford, California on an 8,180-acre (3,310 ha) campus near Palo Alto. Since 1952, more than 54 Stanford faculty, staff, and alumni have won the Nobel Prize, including 19 current faculty members.

    Stanford University, officially Leland Stanford Junior University, is a private research university located in Stanford, California. Stanford was founded in 1885 by Leland and Jane Stanford in memory of their only child, Leland Stanford Jr., who had died of typhoid fever at age 15 the previous year. Stanford is consistently ranked as among the most prestigious and top universities in the world by major education publications. It is also one of the top fundraising institutions in the country, becoming the first school to raise more than a billion dollars in a year.

    Leland Stanford was a U.S. senator and former governor of California who made his fortune as a railroad tycoon. The school admitted its first students on October 1, 1891, as a coeducational and non-denominational institution. Stanford University struggled financially after the death of Leland Stanford in 1893 and again after much of the campus was damaged by the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Following World War II, provost Frederick Terman supported faculty and graduates’ entrepreneurialism to build self-sufficient local industry in what would later be known as Silicon Valley.

    The university is organized around seven schools: three schools consisting of 40 academic departments at the undergraduate level as well as four professional schools that focus on graduate programs in law, medicine, education, and business. All schools are on the same campus. Students compete in 36 varsity sports, and the university is one of two private institutions in the Division I FBS Pac-12 Conference. It has gained 126 NCAA team championships, and Stanford has won the NACDA Directors’ Cup for 24 consecutive years, beginning in 1994–1995. In addition, Stanford students and alumni have won 270 Olympic medals including 139 gold medals.

    As of October 2020, 84 Nobel laureates, 28 Turing Award laureates, and eight Fields Medalists have been affiliated with Stanford as students, alumni, faculty, or staff. In addition, Stanford is particularly noted for its entrepreneurship and is one of the most successful universities in attracting funding for start-ups. Stanford alumni have founded numerous companies, which combined produce more than $2.7 trillion in annual revenue, roughly equivalent to the 7th largest economy in the world (as of 2020). Stanford is the alma mater of one president of the United States (Herbert Hoover), 74 living billionaires, and 17 astronauts. It is also one of the leading producers of Fulbright Scholars, Marshall Scholars, Rhodes Scholars, and members of the United States Congress.

    Stanford University was founded in 1885 by Leland and Jane Stanford, dedicated to Leland Stanford Jr, their only child. The institution opened in 1891 on Stanford’s previous Palo Alto farm.

    Jane and Leland Stanford modeled their university after the great eastern universities, most specifically Cornell University. Stanford opened being called the “Cornell of the West” in 1891 due to faculty being former Cornell affiliates (either professors, alumni, or both) including its first president, David Starr Jordan, and second president, John Casper Branner. Both Cornell and Stanford were among the first to have higher education be accessible, nonsectarian, and open to women as well as to men. Cornell is credited as one of the first American universities to adopt this radical departure from traditional education, and Stanford became an early adopter as well.

    Despite being impacted by earthquakes in both 1906 and 1989, the campus was rebuilt each time. In 1919, The Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace was started by Herbert Hoover to preserve artifacts related to World War I. The Stanford Medical Center, completed in 1959, is a teaching hospital with over 800 beds. The DOE’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory(originally named the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center), established in 1962, performs research in particle physics.

    Land

    Most of Stanford is on an 8,180-acre (12.8 sq mi; 33.1 km^2) campus, one of the largest in the United States. It is located on the San Francisco Peninsula, in the northwest part of the Santa Clara Valley (Silicon Valley) approximately 37 miles (60 km) southeast of San Francisco and approximately 20 miles (30 km) northwest of San Jose. In 2008, 60% of this land remained undeveloped.

    Stanford’s main campus includes a census-designated place within unincorporated Santa Clara County, although some of the university land (such as the Stanford Shopping Center and the Stanford Research Park) is within the city limits of Palo Alto. The campus also includes much land in unincorporated San Mateo County (including the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and the Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve), as well as in the city limits of Menlo Park (Stanford Hills neighborhood), Woodside, and Portola Valley.

    Non-central campus

    Stanford currently operates in various locations outside of its central campus.

    On the founding grant:

    Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve is a 1,200-acre (490 ha) natural reserve south of the central campus owned by the university and used by wildlife biologists for research.
    https://www6.slac.stanford.edu/SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is a facility west of the central campus operated by the university for the Department of Energy. It contains the longest linear particle accelerator in the world, 2 miles (3.2 km) on 426 acres (172 ha) of land.

    Golf course and a seasonal lake: The university also has its own golf course and a seasonal lake (Lake Lagunita, actually an irrigation reservoir), both home to the vulnerable California tiger salamander. As of 2012 Lake Lagunita was often dry and the university had no plans to artificially fill it.

    Off the founding grant:

    Hopkins Marine Station, in Pacific Grove, California, is a marine biology research center owned by the university since 1892.
    Study abroad locations: unlike typical study abroad programs, Stanford itself operates in several locations around the world; thus, each location has Stanford faculty-in-residence and staff in addition to students, creating a “mini-Stanford”.

    Redwood City campus for many of the university’s administrative offices located in Redwood City, California, a few miles north of the main campus. In 2005, the university purchased a small, 35-acre (14 ha) campus in Midpoint Technology Park intended for staff offices; development was delayed by The Great Recession. In 2015 the university announced a development plan and the Redwood City campus opened in March 2019.

    The Bass Center in Washington, DC provides a base, including housing, for the Stanford in Washington program for undergraduates. It includes a small art gallery open to the public.

    China: Stanford Center at Peking University, housed in the Lee Jung Sen Building, is a small center for researchers and students in collaboration with Beijing University [北京大学](CN) (Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University(CN) (KIAA-PKU).

    Administration and organization

    Stanford is a private, non-profit university that is administered as a corporate trust governed by a privately appointed board of trustees with a maximum membership of 38. Trustees serve five-year terms (not more than two consecutive terms) and meet five times annually.[83] A new trustee is chosen by the current trustees by ballot. The Stanford trustees also oversee the Stanford Research Park, the Stanford Shopping Center, the Cantor Center for Visual Arts, Stanford University Medical Center, and many associated medical facilities (including the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital).

    The board appoints a president to serve as the chief executive officer of the university, to prescribe the duties of professors and course of study, to manage financial and business affairs, and to appoint nine vice presidents. The provost is the chief academic and budget officer, to whom the deans of each of the seven schools report. Persis Drell became the 13th provost in February 2017.

    As of 2018, the university was organized into seven academic schools. The schools of Humanities and Sciences (27 departments), Engineering (nine departments), and Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences (four departments) have both graduate and undergraduate programs while the Schools of Law, Medicine, Education and Business have graduate programs only. The powers and authority of the faculty are vested in the Academic Council, which is made up of tenure and non-tenure line faculty, research faculty, senior fellows in some policy centers and institutes, the president of the university, and some other academic administrators, but most matters are handled by the Faculty Senate, made up of 55 elected representatives of the faculty.

    The Associated Students of Stanford University (ASSU) is the student government for Stanford and all registered students are members. Its elected leadership consists of the Undergraduate Senate elected by the undergraduate students, the Graduate Student Council elected by the graduate students, and the President and Vice President elected as a ticket by the entire student body.

    Stanford is the beneficiary of a special clause in the California Constitution, which explicitly exempts Stanford property from taxation so long as the property is used for educational purposes.

    Endowment and donations

    The university’s endowment, managed by the Stanford Management Company, was valued at $27.7 billion as of August 31, 2019. Payouts from the Stanford endowment covered approximately 21.8% of university expenses in the 2019 fiscal year. In the 2018 NACUBO-TIAA survey of colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, only Harvard University, the University of Texas System, and Yale University had larger endowments than Stanford.

    In 2006, President John L. Hennessy launched a five-year campaign called the Stanford Challenge, which reached its $4.3 billion fundraising goal in 2009, two years ahead of time, but continued fundraising for the duration of the campaign. It concluded on December 31, 2011, having raised a total of $6.23 billion and breaking the previous campaign fundraising record of $3.88 billion held by Yale. Specifically, the campaign raised $253.7 million for undergraduate financial aid, as well as $2.33 billion for its initiative in “Seeking Solutions” to global problems, $1.61 billion for “Educating Leaders” by improving K-12 education, and $2.11 billion for “Foundation of Excellence” aimed at providing academic support for Stanford students and faculty. Funds supported 366 new fellowships for graduate students, 139 new endowed chairs for faculty, and 38 new or renovated buildings. The new funding also enabled the construction of a facility for stem cell research; a new campus for the business school; an expansion of the law school; a new Engineering Quad; a new art and art history building; an on-campus concert hall; a new art museum; and a planned expansion of the medical school, among other things. In 2012, the university raised $1.035 billion, becoming the first school to raise more than a billion dollars in a year.

    Research centers and institutes

    DOE’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory
    Stanford Research Institute, a center of innovation to support economic development in the region.
    Hoover Institution, a conservative American public policy institution and research institution that promotes personal and economic liberty, free enterprise, and limited government.
    Hasso Plattner Institute of Design, a multidisciplinary design school in cooperation with the Hasso Plattner Institute of University of Potsdam [Universität Potsdam](DE) that integrates product design, engineering, and business management education).
    Martin Luther King Jr. Research and Education Institute, which grew out of and still contains the Martin Luther King Jr. Papers Project.
    John S. Knight Fellowship for Professional Journalists
    Center for Ocean Solutions
    Together with UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco, Stanford is part of the Biohub, a new medical science research center founded in 2016 by a $600 million commitment from Facebook CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg and pediatrician Priscilla Chan.

    Discoveries and innovation

    Natural sciences

    Biological synthesis of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) – Arthur Kornberg synthesized DNA material and won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1959 for his work at Stanford.
    First Transgenic organism – Stanley Cohen and Herbert Boyer were the first scientists to transplant genes from one living organism to another, a fundamental discovery for genetic engineering. Thousands of products have been developed on the basis of their work, including human growth hormone and hepatitis B vaccine.
    Laser – Arthur Leonard Schawlow shared the 1981 Nobel Prize in Physics with Nicolaas Bloembergen and Kai Siegbahn for his work on lasers.
    Nuclear magnetic resonance – Felix Bloch developed new methods for nuclear magnetic precision measurements, which are the underlying principles of the MRI.

    Computer and applied sciences

    ARPANETStanford Research Institute, formerly part of Stanford but on a separate campus, was the site of one of the four original ARPANET nodes.

    Internet—Stanford was the site where the original design of the Internet was undertaken. Vint Cerf led a research group to elaborate the design of the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP/IP) that he originally co-created with Robert E. Kahn (Bob Kahn) in 1973 and which formed the basis for the architecture of the Internet.

    Frequency modulation synthesis – John Chowning of the Music department invented the FM music synthesis algorithm in 1967, and Stanford later licensed it to Yamaha Corporation.

    Google – Google began in January 1996 as a research project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin when they were both PhD students at Stanford. They were working on the Stanford Digital Library Project (SDLP). The SDLP’s goal was “to develop the enabling technologies for a single, integrated and universal digital library” and it was funded through the National Science Foundation, among other federal agencies.

    Klystron tube – invented by the brothers Russell and Sigurd Varian at Stanford. Their prototype was completed and demonstrated successfully on August 30, 1937. Upon publication in 1939, news of the klystron immediately influenced the work of U.S. and UK researchers working on radar equipment.

    RISCARPA funded VLSI project of microprocessor design. Stanford and University of California- Berkeley are most associated with the popularization of this concept. The Stanford MIPS would go on to be commercialized as the successful MIPS architecture, while Berkeley RISC gave its name to the entire concept, commercialized as the SPARC. Another success from this era were IBM’s efforts that eventually led to the IBM POWER instruction set architecture, PowerPC, and Power ISA. As these projects matured, a wide variety of similar designs flourished in the late 1980s and especially the early 1990s, representing a major force in the Unix workstation market as well as embedded processors in laser printers, routers and similar products.
    SUN workstation – Andy Bechtolsheim designed the SUN workstation for the Stanford University Network communications project as a personal CAD workstation, which led to Sun Microsystems.

    Businesses and entrepreneurship

    Stanford is one of the most successful universities in creating companies and licensing its inventions to existing companies; it is often held up as a model for technology transfer. Stanford’s Office of Technology Licensing is responsible for commercializing university research, intellectual property, and university-developed projects.

    The university is described as having a strong venture culture in which students are encouraged, and often funded, to launch their own companies.

    Companies founded by Stanford alumni generate more than $2.7 trillion in annual revenue, equivalent to the 10th-largest economy in the world.

    Some companies closely associated with Stanford and their connections include:

    Hewlett-Packard, 1939, co-founders William R. Hewlett (B.S, PhD) and David Packard (M.S).
    Silicon Graphics, 1981, co-founders James H. Clark (Associate Professor) and several of his grad students.
    Sun Microsystems, 1982, co-founders Vinod Khosla (M.B.A), Andy Bechtolsheim (PhD) and Scott McNealy (M.B.A).
    Cisco, 1984, founders Leonard Bosack (M.S) and Sandy Lerner (M.S) who were in charge of Stanford Computer Science and Graduate School of Business computer operations groups respectively when the hardware was developed.[163]
    Yahoo!, 1994, co-founders Jerry Yang (B.S, M.S) and David Filo (M.S).
    Google, 1998, co-founders Larry Page (M.S) and Sergey Brin (M.S).
    LinkedIn, 2002, co-founders Reid Hoffman (B.S), Konstantin Guericke (B.S, M.S), Eric Lee (B.S), and Alan Liu (B.S).
    Instagram, 2010, co-founders Kevin Systrom (B.S) and Mike Krieger (B.S).
    Snapchat, 2011, co-founders Evan Spiegel and Bobby Murphy (B.S).
    Coursera, 2012, co-founders Andrew Ng (Associate Professor) and Daphne Koller (Professor, PhD).

    Student body

    Stanford enrolled 6,996 undergraduate and 10,253 graduate students as of the 2019–2020 school year. Women comprised 50.4% of undergraduates and 41.5% of graduate students. In the same academic year, the freshman retention rate was 99%.

    Stanford awarded 1,819 undergraduate degrees, 2,393 master’s degrees, 770 doctoral degrees, and 3270 professional degrees in the 2018–2019 school year. The four-year graduation rate for the class of 2017 cohort was 72.9%, and the six-year rate was 94.4%. The relatively low four-year graduation rate is a function of the university’s coterminal degree (or “coterm”) program, which allows students to earn a master’s degree as a 1-to-2-year extension of their undergraduate program.

    As of 2010, fifteen percent of undergraduates were first-generation students.

    Athletics

    As of 2016 Stanford had 16 male varsity sports and 20 female varsity sports, 19 club sports and about 27 intramural sports. In 1930, following a unanimous vote by the Executive Committee for the Associated Students, the athletic department adopted the mascot “Indian.” The Indian symbol and name were dropped by President Richard Lyman in 1972, after objections from Native American students and a vote by the student senate. The sports teams are now officially referred to as the “Stanford Cardinal,” referring to the deep red color, not the cardinal bird. Stanford is a member of the Pac-12 Conference in most sports, the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation in several other sports, and the America East Conference in field hockey with the participation in the inter-collegiate NCAA’s Division I FBS.

    Its traditional sports rival is the University of California, Berkeley, the neighbor to the north in the East Bay. The winner of the annual “Big Game” between the Cal and Cardinal football teams gains custody of the Stanford Axe.

    Stanford has had at least one NCAA team champion every year since the 1976–77 school year and has earned 126 NCAA national team titles since its establishment, the most among universities, and Stanford has won 522 individual national championships, the most by any university. Stanford has won the award for the top-ranked Division 1 athletic program—the NACDA Directors’ Cup, formerly known as the Sears Cup—annually for the past twenty-four straight years. Stanford athletes have won medals in every Olympic Games since 1912, winning 270 Olympic medals total, 139 of them gold. In the 2008 Summer Olympics, and 2016 Summer Olympics, Stanford won more Olympic medals than any other university in the United States. Stanford athletes won 16 medals at the 2012 Summer Olympics (12 gold, two silver and two bronze), and 27 medals at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

    Traditions

    The unofficial motto of Stanford, selected by President Jordan, is Die Luft der Freiheit weht. Translated from the German language, this quotation from Ulrich von Hutten means, “The wind of freedom blows.” The motto was controversial during World War I, when anything in German was suspect; at that time the university disavowed that this motto was official.
    Hail, Stanford, Hail! is the Stanford Hymn sometimes sung at ceremonies or adapted by the various University singing groups. It was written in 1892 by mechanical engineering professor Albert W. Smith and his wife, Mary Roberts Smith (in 1896 she earned the first Stanford doctorate in Economics and later became associate professor of Sociology), but was not officially adopted until after a performance on campus in March 1902 by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
    “Uncommon Man/Uncommon Woman”: Stanford does not award honorary degrees, but in 1953 the degree of “Uncommon Man/Uncommon Woman” was created to recognize individuals who give rare and extraordinary service to the University. Technically, this degree is awarded by the Stanford Associates, a voluntary group that is part of the university’s alumni association. As Stanford’s highest honor, it is not conferred at prescribed intervals, but only when appropriate to recognize extraordinary service. Recipients include Herbert Hoover, Bill Hewlett, Dave Packard, Lucile Packard, and John Gardner.
    Big Game events: The events in the week leading up to the Big Game vs. UC Berkeley, including Gaieties (a musical written, composed, produced, and performed by the students of Ram’s Head Theatrical Society).
    “Viennese Ball”: a formal ball with waltzes that was initially started in the 1970s by students returning from the now-closed Stanford in Vienna overseas program. It is now open to all students.
    “Full Moon on the Quad”: An annual event at Main Quad, where students gather to kiss one another starting at midnight. Typically organized by the Junior class cabinet, the festivities include live entertainment, such as music and dance performances.
    “Band Run”: An annual festivity at the beginning of the school year, where the band picks up freshmen from dorms across campus while stopping to perform at each location, culminating in a finale performance at Main Quad.
    “Mausoleum Party”: An annual Halloween Party at the Stanford Mausoleum, the final resting place of Leland Stanford Jr. and his parents. A 20-year tradition, the “Mausoleum Party” was on hiatus from 2002 to 2005 due to a lack of funding, but was revived in 2006. In 2008, it was hosted in Old Union rather than at the actual Mausoleum, because rain prohibited generators from being rented. In 2009, after fundraising efforts by the Junior Class Presidents and the ASSU Executive, the event was able to return to the Mausoleum despite facing budget cuts earlier in the year.
    Former campus traditions include the “Big Game bonfire” on Lake Lagunita (a seasonal lake usually dry in the fall), which was formally ended in 1997 because of the presence of endangered salamanders in the lake bed.

    Award laureates and scholars

    Stanford’s current community of scholars includes:

    19 Nobel Prize laureates (as of October 2020, 85 affiliates in total)
    171 members of the National Academy of Sciences
    109 members of National Academy of Engineering
    76 members of National Academy of Medicine
    288 members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
    19 recipients of the National Medal of Science
    1 recipient of the National Medal of Technology
    4 recipients of the National Humanities Medal
    49 members of American Philosophical Society
    56 fellows of the American Physics Society (since 1995)
    4 Pulitzer Prize winners
    31 MacArthur Fellows
    4 Wolf Foundation Prize winners
    2 ACL Lifetime Achievement Award winners
    14 AAAI fellows
    2 Presidential Medal of Freedom winners

    Stanford University Seal

     
  • richardmitnick 8:51 pm on November 17, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "When will Antarctica’s ice cliffs come crashing down?", , , Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology, In Antarctica these magnificent cliffs collar the edges of the ice sheet., Scientists hope to someday soon have aerial drones that shoot lasers down from right above the cliffs., Surprisingly no one has ever actually surveyed the height of ice cliffs around the continent., The end of the ice could contribute as much as six feet of sea-level rise by 2100 according to some models., , There is a lot of the scary news that talks about what could happen if all of West Antarctica suddenly disintegrated., There is pretty good satellite coverage in Antarctica.   

    From The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution: “When will Antarctica’s ice cliffs come crashing down?” 

    From The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

    11.16.22
    Evan Lubofsky
    @Evan Lubofsky

    1
    Illustration of NASA’s Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite-2 (ICESat-2). (Graphic by NASA)

    As increased warming in Antarctica causes glaciers to retreat and shed their increasingly-unstable shelves, towering walls of ice are left looming high above the sea. But how tall these rugged cliffs actually grow before they come crashing down has been a question for glacial scientists—and one that has important implications for sea-level rise.

    “There’s a theory out there that says ice is only so strong, so it can only ever reach a certain height before it breaks apart,” says WHOI assistant scientist Catherine Walker, who studies the dynamics of ice on Earth and in space. “In the case of ice cliffs, the general assumption has been that a cliff can only grow to roughly one-hundred meters—just slightly higher than the Statue of Liberty—before it collapses under its own weight and falls into the ocean.”

    The theory, it turns out, stems from research that University of Michigan professor Jeremy Bassis and Walker conducted a decade ago. They had come up with some relatively straightforward calculations and combined those with estimated heights of ice cliffs that had been observed in existing ice shelves to settle on the 100-meter figure.

    Surprisingly no one has ever actually surveyed the height of ice cliffs around the continent, according to Walker. Yet, sea-level rise models, and predictions for how high seas will rise, are largely based on this 100-meter threshold figure.

    “In reality, we don’t actually know when an ice cliff will collapse,” says Walker. “It’s currently one of the biggest sources of uncertainty in sea-level predictions.”

    In Antarctica these magnificent cliffs collar the edges of the ice sheet. Paired with floating ice shelves, they hold in all the ice sitting in the middle of the continent like a cork that keeps it from flowing into the ocean. If, in the near future, ice cliffs begin to collapse rapidly, the interior of the ice sheet will start to get eaten away faster and faster (called runaway collapse), which could contribute as much as six feet of sea-level rise by 2100, according to some models.

    “This is where a lot of the scary news reports come from that talk about what could happen if all of West Antarctica suddenly disintegrated,” says Walker.

    2

    Fortunately, the height of these ice cliffs can be measured with help from a NASA satellite designed specifically for the topographical profiling of ice. The so-called Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite-2 (ICESat-2 [above]), launched in 2018 as part of NASA’s Earth Observing System, measures ice sheet elevation and sea ice thickness by shooting ribbon-like lasers down at the Earth roughly every three months.

    “There happens to be pretty good satellite coverage in Antarctica,” says Walker, who recently received funding from NASA to begin processing the ICESat-2 cliff height measurements. “The data should help us find if and where [cliffs] are threatening to collapse imminently, which in turn will tell us more about how quickly sea levels will rise,” she says. “If we find, for example, that most or all of the cliffs are less than 100 meters high, they will still contribute to sea-level rise, but likely at a slower rate than expected.”

    3
    Catherine Walker stands on the McMurdo Ice Shelf in Antarctica in October 2014. In the background, the United States Antarctic Program’s McMurdo Station is visible at the base of Mt. Erebus, an active volcano, along with a C-130 aircraft delivering people and cargo to the outpost. (Photo by Jacob Buffo/Georgia Tech/Dartmouth College)

    Bassis, who is collaborating with Walker on this project, says he’s excited that the 100-meter ice cliff theory is being revisited. It will allow for the input of more “empirical constraints” into models to make better predictions as to when the cliffs are likely to collapse—and how quickly, he says.

    “What Catherine is doing here is really important as it gives us a chance to revisit the work we did ten years ago with a whole bunch more data and a much more sophisticated modeling approach,” says Bassis. “It’s always interesting when you can go back and test your own hypotheses—particularly when you’re not sure the current theories are right.”

    Beyond their analysis of cliff height measurements, Walker and Bassis plan to use ICESat-2 data to map crevasses (i.e., cracks) within the glaciers. “The strength of the ice may depend on how big these crevasses are, so this will give us a much more quantitative way to figure that out,” says Bassis.

    Satellite measurements aren’t perfect, however, and there are gaps between the laser measurements that ICESat-2 traces over the ice. “You have something way up there measuring stuff way down here,” Walker puts simply.

    To increase the spatial coverage in the future—and ground truth the satellite measurements—Walker hopes to someday soon have aerial drones that shoot lasers down from right above the cliffs. But for now, ICESat-2 is shining an unprecedented light on Antarctica’s coastline.

    “The results of this study could help rewrite the story of not only what the height threshold should be for ice cliffs, but what their actual contribution to sea-level rise might look like in the future,” says Walker.

    Funding for this research is being provided by NASA’s Cryosphere Program, grant 80NSSC22K0380.

    See the full article here .

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    Mission Statement

    The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution is dedicated to advancing knowledge of the ocean and its connection with the Earth system through a sustained commitment to excellence in science, engineering, and education, and to the application of this knowledge to problems facing society.

    Vision & Mission

    The ocean is a defining feature of our planet and crucial to life on Earth, yet it remains one of the planet’s last unexplored frontiers. For this reason, WHOI scientists and engineers are committed to understanding all facets of the ocean as well as its complex connections with Earth’s atmosphere, land, ice, seafloor, and life—including humanity. This is essential not only to advance knowledge about our planet, but also to ensure society’s long-term welfare and to help guide human stewardship of the environment. WHOI researchers are also dedicated to training future generations of ocean science leaders, to providing unbiased information that informs public policy and decision-making, and to expanding public awareness about the importance of the global ocean and its resources.

    The Institution is organized into six departments, the Cooperative Institute for Climate and Ocean Research, and a marine policy center. Its shore-based facilities are located in the village of Woods Hole, Massachusetts and a mile and a half away on the Quissett Campus. The bulk of the Institution’s funding comes from grants and contracts from the National Science Foundation and other government agencies, augmented by foundations and private donations.

    WHOI scientists, engineers, and students collaborate to develop theories, test ideas, build seagoing instruments, and collect data in diverse marine environments. Ships operated by WHOI carry research scientists throughout the world’s oceans. The WHOI fleet includes two large research vessels (R/V Atlantis and R/V Neil Armstrong); the coastal craft Tioga; small research craft such as the dive-operation work boat Echo; the deep-diving human-occupied submersible Alvin; the tethered, remotely operated vehicle Jason/Medea; and autonomous underwater vehicles such as the REMUS and SeaBED.
    WHOI offers graduate and post-doctoral studies in marine science. There are several fellowship and training programs, and graduate degrees are awarded through a joint program with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. WHOI is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges . WHOI also offers public outreach programs and informal education through its Exhibit Center and summer tours. The Institution has a volunteer program and a membership program, WHOI Associate.

    On October 1, 2020, Peter B. de Menocal became the institution’s eleventh president and director.

    History

    In 1927, a National Academy of Sciences committee concluded that it was time to “consider the share of the United States of America in a worldwide program of oceanographic research.” The committee’s recommendation for establishing a permanent independent research laboratory on the East Coast to “prosecute oceanography in all its branches” led to the founding in 1930 of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

    A $2.5 million grant from the Rockefeller Foundation supported the summer work of a dozen scientists, construction of a laboratory building and commissioning of a research vessel, the 142-foot (43 m) ketch R/V Atlantis, whose profile still forms the Institution’s logo.

    WHOI grew substantially to support significant defense-related research during World War II, and later began a steady growth in staff, research fleet, and scientific stature. From 1950 to 1956, the director was Dr. Edward “Iceberg” Smith, an Arctic explorer, oceanographer and retired Coast Guard rear admiral.

    In 1977 the institution appointed the influential oceanographer John Steele as director, and he served until his retirement in 1989.

    On 1 September 1985, a joint French-American expedition led by Jean-Louis Michel of IFREMER and Robert Ballard of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution identified the location of the wreck of the RMS Titanic which sank off the coast of Newfoundland 15 April 1912.

    On 3 April 2011, within a week of resuming of the search operation for Air France Flight 447, a team led by WHOI, operating full ocean depth autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) owned by the Waitt Institute discovered, by means of sidescan sonar, a large portion of debris field from flight AF447.

    In March 2017 the institution effected an open-access policy to make its research publicly accessible online.

    The Institution has maintained a long and controversial business collaboration with the treasure hunter company Odyssey Marine. Likewise, WHOI has participated in the location of the San José galleon in Colombia for the commercial exploitation of the shipwreck by the Government of President Santos and a private company.

    In 2019, iDefense reported that China’s hackers had launched cyberattacks on dozens of academic institutions in an attempt to gain information on technology being developed for the United States Navy. Some of the targets included the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. The attacks have been underway since at least April 2017.

     
  • richardmitnick 12:55 pm on November 16, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Sentinel-5P data used in new methane detection system", Climate Change; Global warming; Ecology,   

    From The European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne] [Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU): “Sentinel-5P data used in new methane detection system” 

    ESA Space For Europe Banner

    European Space Agency – United Space in Europe (EU)

    From The European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne] [Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU)

    11.16.22

    1
    Global methane concentrations.Credit: ESA (Data source: CCI Greenhouse Gases project/contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data 2020)

    As part of worldwide efforts to slow climate change, the United Nations has revealed a new satellite-based system to detect methane emissions. The Methane Alert and Response System (MARS) initiative, launched at COP27, will scale up global efforts to detect and act on major emissions sources and accelerate the implementation of the Global Methane Pledge.

    The Sentinel-5P satellite, the first Copernicus mission dedicated to monitoring our atmosphere, will be crucial in implementing this ambitious initiative.

    Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas and the second biggest driver of global warming. It effectively absorbs heat from the sun, more so than carbon dioxide, and contributes significantly to the warming of the atmosphere. As a result, there is a growing demand to track and regulate methane emissions.

    According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, we must cut methane emissions at least 30% by 2030 – the goal of the Global Methane Pledge – to keep the 1.5°C temperature limit within reach.

    MARS is the first global system providing rapid, actionable and transparent data on methane emissions thanks to satellites. These data will be then made available to policymakers, businesses and the general public. Using state-of-the-art satellite data, including data from the Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite, it will identify major methane emission events, notify relevant stakeholders, and support and track mitigation progress.

    “Copernicus Sentinel-5P is currently the only satellite providing methane measurements daily and at a global scale. I am beyond thrilled to see Sentinel-5P data playing such a large role in the MARS initiative,” commented Claus Zehner, Copernicus Sentinel-5P, Altius and Flex Missions Manager at ESA.

    Sentinel-5P carries the state-of-the-art Tropomi instrument which maps a multitude of trace gases. Aside from methane, these include nitrogen dioxide, ozone, formaldehyde, sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide and aerosols – all of which affect the air we breathe and therefore our health, and our climate. With a swath width of 2600 km, the satellite maps the entire planet every day.

    Manfredi Caltagirone, head of the UN Environmental Programme’s International Methane Emissions Observatory, added, “MARS will use Sentinel-5P daily to detect large methane plumes with low latency and, periodically, ‘hot-spots’ of enhanced methane concentrations. This global coverage from Sentinel-5P is critical to trigger analysis of higher-resolution data, such as those from Copernicus Sentinel-2, for the identification, quantification, attribution and tracking of active sources.”

    3
    The Methane Alert and Response System. © UNEP.

    He continues: “UNEP looks forward to strengthening the collaboration with ESA and other satellite operators to increase the availability of accurate, actionable data needed to accelerate transparent action on methane reductions in the short-term”.

    Beginning with very large point sources from the energy sector, MARS will integrate data from the rapidly expanding system of methane-detecting satellites to include lower-emitting area sources and more frequent detection. Data on coal, waste, livestock and rice will be added gradually to MARS to support Global Methane Pledge implementation.

    ESA’s Director of Earth Observation Programmes, Simonetta Cheli, added, “Reducing methane emissions will make a rapid difference in the fight against climate change. Accurate data that comes from satellites such as Copernicus Sentinel-5P will lead to targeted action and will help governments deliver on this important climate goal.

    See the full article here .


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings


    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne][Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU), established in 1975, is an intergovernmental organization dedicated to the exploration of space, currently with 19 member states. Headquartered in Paris, ESA has a staff of more than 2,000. ESA’s space flight program includes human spaceflight, mainly through the participation in the International Space Station program, the launch and operations of unmanned exploration missions to other planets and the Moon, Earth observation, science, telecommunication as well as maintaining a major spaceport, the Guiana Space Centre at Kourou, French Guiana, and designing launch vehicles. ESA science missions are based at ESTEC (NL) in Noordwijk, Netherlands, Earth Observation missions at ESRIN in Frascati, Italy, ESA Mission Control (ESOC) is in Darmstadt, Germany, the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) that trains astronauts for future missions is situated in Cologne, Germany, and the
    European Space Astronomy Centre is located in Villanueva de la Cañada, Spain.

    ESA’s space flight programme includes human spaceflight (mainly through participation in the International Space Station program); the launch and operation of uncrewed exploration missions to other planets and the Moon; Earth observation, science and telecommunication; designing launch vehicles; and maintaining a major spaceport, the The Guiana Space Centre [Centre Spatial Guyanais; CSG also called Europe’s Spaceport) at Kourou, French Guiana. The main European launch vehicle Ariane 5 is operated through Arianespace with ESA sharing in the costs of launching and further developing this launch vehicle. The agency is also working with The National Aeronautics and Space Agency to manufacture the Orion Spacecraft service module that will fly on the Space Launch System.

    The agency’s facilities are distributed among the following centres:

    ESA European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) (NL) in Noordwijk, Netherlands;
    ESA Centre for Earth Observation [ESRIN] (IT) in Frascati, Italy;
    ESA Mission Control ESA European Space Operations Center [ESOC](DE) is in Darmstadt, Germany;
    ESA -European Astronaut Centre [EAC] trains astronauts for future missions is situated in Cologne, Germany;
    European Centre for Space Applications and Telecommunications (ECSAT) (UK), a research institute created in 2009, is located in Harwell, England;
    ESA – European Space Astronomy Centre [ESAC] (ES) is located in Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain.
    European Space Agency Science Programme is a long-term programme of space science and space exploration missions.

    Foundation

    After World War II, many European scientists left Western Europe in order to work with the United States. Although the 1950s boom made it possible for Western European countries to invest in research and specifically in space-related activities, Western European scientists realized solely national projects would not be able to compete with the two main superpowers. In 1958, only months after the Sputnik shock, Edoardo Amaldi (Italy) and Pierre Auger (France), two prominent members of the Western European scientific community, met to discuss the foundation of a common Western European space agency. The meeting was attended by scientific representatives from eight countries, including Harrie Massey (United Kingdom).

    The Western European nations decided to have two agencies: one concerned with developing a launch system, ELDO (European Launch Development Organization) , and the other the precursor of the European Space Agency, ESRO (European Space Research Organization) . The latter was established on 20 March 1964 by an agreement signed on 14 June 1962. From 1968 to 1972, ESRO launched seven research satellites.

    ESA in its current form was founded with the ESA Convention in 1975, when ESRO was merged with ELDO. ESA had ten founding member states: Belgium, Denmark, France, West Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. These signed the ESA Convention in 1975 and deposited the instruments of ratification by 1980, when the convention came into force. During this interval the agency functioned in a de facto fashion. ESA launched its first major scientific mission in 1975, Cos-B, a space probe monitoring gamma-ray emissions in the universe, which was first worked on by ESRO.

    ESA50 Logo large

    Later activities

    ESA collaborated with National Aeronautics Space Agency on the International Ultraviolet Explorer (IUE), the world’s first high-orbit telescope, which was launched in 1978 and operated successfully for 18 years.

    ESA Infrared Space Observatory.

    European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne][Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU)/National Aeronautics and Space Administration Solar Orbiter annotated.

    A number of successful Earth-orbit projects followed, and in 1986 ESA began Giotto, its first deep-space mission, to study the comets Halley and Grigg–Skjellerup. Hipparcos, a star-mapping mission, was launched in 1989 and in the 1990s SOHO, Ulysses and the Hubble Space Telescope were all jointly carried out with NASA. Later scientific missions in cooperation with NASA include the Cassini–Huygens space probe, to which ESA contributed by building the Titan landing module Huygens.

    ESA/Huygens Probe from Cassini landed on Titan.

    As the successor of ELDO, ESA has also constructed rockets for scientific and commercial payloads. Ariane 1, launched in 1979, carried mostly commercial payloads into orbit from 1984 onward. The next two versions of the Ariane rocket were intermediate stages in the development of a more advanced launch system, the Ariane 4, which operated between 1988 and 2003 and established ESA as the world leader in commercial space launches in the 1990s. Although the succeeding Ariane 5 experienced a failure on its first flight, it has since firmly established itself within the heavily competitive commercial space launch market with 82 successful launches until 2018. The successor launch vehicle of Ariane 5, the Ariane 6, is under development and is envisioned to enter service in the 2020s.

    The beginning of the new millennium saw ESA become, along with agencies like National Aeronautics Space Agency, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JP), Indian Space Research Organization (IN), the Canadian Space Agency(CA) and Roscosmos (RU), one of the major participants in scientific space research. Although ESA had relied on co-operation with NASA in previous decades, especially the 1990s, changed circumstances (such as tough legal restrictions on information sharing by the United States military) led to decisions to rely more on itself and on co-operation with Russia. A 2011 press issue thus stated:

    “Russia is ESA’s first partner in its efforts to ensure long-term access to space. There is a framework agreement between ESA and the government of the Russian Federation on cooperation and partnership in the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes, and cooperation is already underway in two different areas of launcher activity that will bring benefits to both partners.”

    Notable ESA programs include SMART-1, a probe testing cutting-edge space propulsion technology, the Mars Express and Venus Express missions, as well as the development of the Ariane 5 rocket and its role in the ISS partnership. ESA maintains its scientific and research projects mainly for astronomy-space missions such as Corot, launched on 27 December 2006, a milestone in the search for exoplanets.

    On 21 January 2019, ArianeGroup and Arianespace announced a one-year contract with ESA to study and prepare for a mission to mine the Moon for lunar regolith.

    Mission

    The treaty establishing the European Space Agency reads:

    The purpose of the Agency shall be to provide for and to promote, for exclusively peaceful purposes, cooperation among European States in space research and technology and their space applications, with a view to their being used for scientific purposes and for operational space applications systems…

    ESA is responsible for setting a unified space and related industrial policy, recommending space objectives to the member states, and integrating national programs like satellite development, into the European program as much as possible.

    Jean-Jacques Dordain – ESA’s Director General (2003–2015) – outlined the European Space Agency’s mission in a 2003 interview:

    “Today space activities have pursued the benefit of citizens, and citizens are asking for a better quality of life on Earth. They want greater security and economic wealth, but they also want to pursue their dreams, to increase their knowledge, and they want younger people to be attracted to the pursuit of science and technology. I think that space can do all of this: it can produce a higher quality of life, better security, more economic wealth, and also fulfill our citizens’ dreams and thirst for knowledge, and attract the young generation. This is the reason space exploration is an integral part of overall space activities. It has always been so, and it will be even more important in the future.”

    Activities

    According to the ESA website, the activities are:

    Observing the Earth
    Human Spaceflight
    Launchers
    Navigation
    Space Science
    Space Engineering & Technology
    Operations
    Telecommunications & Integrated Applications
    Preparing for the Future
    Space for Climate

    Programs

    Copernicus Programme
    Cosmic Vision
    ExoMars
    FAST20XX
    Galileo
    Horizon 2000
    Living Planet Programme
    Mandatory

    Every member country must contribute to these programs:

    Technology Development Element Program
    Science Core Technology Program
    General Study Program
    European Component Initiative

    Optional

    Depending on their individual choices the countries can contribute to the following programs, listed according to:

    Launchers
    Earth Observation
    Human Spaceflight and Exploration
    Telecommunications
    Navigation
    Space Situational Awareness
    Technology

    ESA_LAB@

    ESA has formed partnerships with universities. ESA_LAB@ refers to research laboratories at universities. Currently there are ESA_LAB@

    Technische Universität Darmstadt (DE)
    École des hautes études commerciales de Paris (HEC Paris) (FR)
    Université de recherche Paris Sciences et Lettres (FR)
    The University of Central Lancashire (UK)

    Membership and contribution to ESA

    By 2015, ESA was an intergovernmental organization of 22 member states. Member states participate to varying degrees in the mandatory (25% of total expenditures in 2008) and optional space programs (75% of total expenditures in 2008). The 2008 budget amounted to €3.0 billion whilst the 2009 budget amounted to €3.6 billion. The total budget amounted to about €3.7 billion in 2010, €3.99 billion in 2011, €4.02 billion in 2012, €4.28 billion in 2013, €4.10 billion in 2014 and €4.33 billion in 2015. English is the main language within ESA. Additionally, official documents are also provided in German and documents regarding the Spacelab are also provided in Italian. If found appropriate, the agency may conduct its correspondence in any language of a member state.

    Non-full member states
    Slovenia
    Since 2016, Slovenia has been an associated member of the ESA.

    Latvia
    Latvia became the second current associated member on 30 June 2020, when the Association Agreement was signed by ESA Director Jan Wörner and the Minister of Education and Science of Latvia, Ilga Šuplinska in Riga. The Saeima ratified it on July 27. Previously associated members were Austria, Norway and Finland, all of which later joined ESA as full members.

    Canada
    Since 1 January 1979, Canada has had the special status of a Cooperating State within ESA. By virtue of this accord, The Canadian Space Agency [Agence spatiale canadienne, ASC] (CA) takes part in ESA’s deliberative bodies and decision-making and also in ESA’s programs and activities. Canadian firms can bid for and receive contracts to work on programs. The accord has a provision ensuring a fair industrial return to Canada. The most recent Cooperation Agreement was signed on 15 December 2010 with a term extending to 2020. For 2014, Canada’s annual assessed contribution to the ESA general budget was €6,059,449 (CAD$8,559,050). For 2017, Canada has increased its annual contribution to €21,600,000 (CAD$30,000,000).

    Enlargement

    After the decision of the ESA Council of 21/22 March 2001, the procedure for accession of the European states was detailed as described the document titled The Plan for European Co-operating States (PECS). Nations that want to become a full member of ESA do so in 3 stages. First a Cooperation Agreement is signed between the country and ESA. In this stage, the country has very limited financial responsibilities. If a country wants to co-operate more fully with ESA, it signs a European Cooperating State (ECS) Agreement. The ECS Agreement makes companies based in the country eligible for participation in ESA procurements. The country can also participate in all ESA programs, except for the Basic Technology Research Programme. While the financial contribution of the country concerned increases, it is still much lower than that of a full member state. The agreement is normally followed by a Plan For European Cooperating State (or PECS Charter). This is a 5-year programme of basic research and development activities aimed at improving the nation’s space industry capacity. At the end of the 5-year period, the country can either begin negotiations to become a full member state or an associated state or sign a new PECS Charter.

    During the Ministerial Meeting in December 2014, ESA ministers approved a resolution calling for discussions to begin with Israel, Australia and South Africa on future association agreements. The ministers noted that “concrete cooperation is at an advanced stage” with these nations and that “prospects for mutual benefits are existing”.

    A separate space exploration strategy resolution calls for further co-operation with the United States, Russia and China on “LEO” exploration, including a continuation of ISS cooperation and the development of a robust plan for the coordinated use of space transportation vehicles and systems for exploration purposes, participation in robotic missions for the exploration of the Moon, the robotic exploration of Mars, leading to a broad Mars Sample Return mission in which Europe should be involved as a full partner, and human missions beyond LEO in the longer term.”

    Relationship with the European Union

    The political perspective of the European Union (EU) was to make ESA an agency of the EU by 2014, although this date was not met. The EU member states provide most of ESA’s funding, and they are all either full ESA members or observers.

    History

    At the time ESA was formed, its main goals did not encompass human space flight; rather it considered itself to be primarily a scientific research organization for uncrewed space exploration in contrast to its American and Soviet counterparts. It is therefore not surprising that the first non-Soviet European in space was not an ESA astronaut on a European space craft; it was Czechoslovak Vladimír Remek who in 1978 became the first non-Soviet or American in space (the first man in space being Yuri Gagarin of the Soviet Union) – on a Soviet Soyuz spacecraft, followed by the Pole Mirosław Hermaszewski and East German Sigmund Jähn in the same year. This Soviet co-operation programme, known as Intercosmos, primarily involved the participation of Eastern bloc countries. In 1982, however, Jean-Loup Chrétien became the first non-Communist Bloc astronaut on a flight to the Soviet Salyut 7 space station.

    Because Chrétien did not officially fly into space as an ESA astronaut, but rather as a member of the French CNES astronaut corps, the German Ulf Merbold is considered the first ESA astronaut to fly into space. He participated in the STS-9 Space Shuttle mission that included the first use of the European-built Spacelab in 1983. STS-9 marked the beginning of an extensive ESA/NASA joint partnership that included dozens of space flights of ESA astronauts in the following years. Some of these missions with Spacelab were fully funded and organizationally and scientifically controlled by ESA (such as two missions by Germany and one by Japan) with European astronauts as full crew members rather than guests on board. Beside paying for Spacelab flights and seats on the shuttles, ESA continued its human space flight co-operation with the Soviet Union and later Russia, including numerous visits to Mir.

    During the latter half of the 1980s, European human space flights changed from being the exception to routine and therefore, in 1990, the European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany was established. It selects and trains prospective astronauts and is responsible for the co-ordination with international partners, especially with regard to the International Space Station. As of 2006, the ESA astronaut corps officially included twelve members, including nationals from most large European countries except the United Kingdom.

    In the summer of 2008, ESA started to recruit new astronauts so that final selection would be due in spring 2009. Almost 10,000 people registered as astronaut candidates before registration ended in June 2008. 8,413 fulfilled the initial application criteria. Of the applicants, 918 were chosen to take part in the first stage of psychological testing, which narrowed down the field to 192. After two-stage psychological tests and medical evaluation in early 2009, as well as formal interviews, six new members of the European Astronaut Corps were selected – five men and one woman.

    Cooperation with other countries and organizations

    ESA has signed co-operation agreements with the following states that currently neither plan to integrate as tightly with ESA institutions as Canada, nor envision future membership of ESA: Argentina, Brazil, China, India (for the Chandrayan mission), Russia and Turkey.

    Additionally, ESA has joint projects with the European Union, NASA of the United States and is participating in the International Space Station together with the United States (NASA), Russia and Japan (JAXA).

    European Union
    ESA and EU member states
    ESA-only members
    EU-only members

    ESA is not an agency or body of the European Union (EU), and has non-EU countries (Norway, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom) as members. There are however ties between the two, with various agreements in place and being worked on, to define the legal status of ESA with regard to the EU.

    There are common goals between ESA and the EU. ESA has an EU liaison office in Brussels. On certain projects, the EU and ESA co-operate, such as the upcoming Galileo satellite navigation system. Space policy has since December 2009 been an area for voting in the European Council. Under the European Space Policy of 2007, the EU, ESA and its Member States committed themselves to increasing co-ordination of their activities and programs and to organizing their respective roles relating to space.

    The Lisbon Treaty of 2009 reinforces the case for space in Europe and strengthens the role of ESA as an R&D space agency. Article 189 of the Treaty gives the EU a mandate to elaborate a European space policy and take related measures, and provides that the EU should establish appropriate relations with ESA.

    Former Italian astronaut Umberto Guidoni, during his tenure as a Member of the European Parliament from 2004 to 2009, stressed the importance of the European Union as a driving force for space exploration, “…since other players are coming up such as India and China it is becoming ever more important that Europeans can have an independent access to space. We have to invest more into space research and technology in order to have an industry capable of competing with other international players.”

    The first EU-ESA International Conference on Human Space Exploration took place in Prague on 22 and 23 October 2009. A road map which would lead to a common vision and strategic planning in the area of space exploration was discussed. Ministers from all 29 EU and ESA members as well as members of parliament were in attendance.

    National space organizations of member states:

    The Centre National d’Études Spatiales(FR) (CNES) (National Centre for Space Study) is the French government space agency (administratively, a “public establishment of industrial and commercial character”). Its headquarters are in central Paris. CNES is the main participant on the Ariane project. Indeed, CNES designed and tested all Ariane family rockets (mainly from its centre in Évry near Paris)
    The UK Space Agency is a partnership of the UK government departments which are active in space. Through the UK Space Agency, the partners provide delegates to represent the UK on the various ESA governing bodies. Each partner funds its own programme.
    The Italian Space Agency A.S.I. – Agenzia Spaziale Italiana was founded in 1988 to promote, co-ordinate and conduct space activities in Italy. Operating under the Ministry of the Universities and of Scientific and Technological Research, the agency cooperates with numerous entities active in space technology and with the president of the Council of Ministers. Internationally, the ASI provides Italy’s delegation to the Council of the European Space Agency and to its subordinate bodies.
    The German Aerospace Center (DLR)[Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e. V.] is the national research centre for aviation and space flight of the Federal Republic of Germany and of other member states in the Helmholtz Association. Its extensive research and development projects are included in national and international cooperative programs. In addition to its research projects, the centre is the assigned space agency of Germany bestowing headquarters of German space flight activities and its associates.
    The Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial (INTA)(ES) (National Institute for Aerospace Technique) is a Public Research Organization specialized in aerospace research and technology development in Spain. Among other functions, it serves as a platform for space research and acts as a significant testing facility for the aeronautic and space sector in the country.

    National Aeronautics Space Agency

    ESA has a long history of collaboration with NASA. Since ESA’s astronaut corps was formed, the Space Shuttle has been the primary launch vehicle used by ESA’s astronauts to get into space through partnership programs with NASA. In the 1980s and 1990s, the Spacelab programme was an ESA-NASA joint research programme that had ESA develop and manufacture orbital labs for the Space Shuttle for several flights on which ESA participate with astronauts in experiments.

    In robotic science mission and exploration missions, NASA has been ESA’s main partner. Cassini–Huygens was a joint NASA-ESA mission, along with the Infrared Space Observatory, INTEGRAL, SOHO, and others.

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration/European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne][Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU)/ASI Italian Space Agency [Agenzia Spaziale Italiana](IT) Cassini Spacecraft.

    European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne][Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU) Integral spacecraft

    European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne] [Europäische Weltraumorganization] (EU)/National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationSOHO satellite. Launched in 1995.

    Also, the Hubble Space Telescope is a joint project of NASA and ESA.

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration/European Space Agency[La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne] [Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU) Hubble Space Telescope

    ESA-NASA joint projects include the James Webb Space Telescope and the proposed Laser Interferometer Space Antenna.

    National Aeronautics Space Agency/European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne] [Europäische Weltraumorganization]Canadian Space Agency [Agence Spatiale Canadienne](CA) James Webb Space Telescope annotated. Scheduled for launch in December 2021.

    Gravity is talking. Lisa will listen. Dialogos of Eide.

    The European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne][Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU)/National Aeronautics and Space Administration eLISA space based, the future of gravitational wave research.

    NASA has committed to provide support to ESA’s proposed MarcoPolo-R mission to return an asteroid sample to Earth for further analysis. NASA and ESA will also likely join together for a Mars Sample Return Mission. In October 2020 the ESA entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with NASA to work together on the Artemis program, which will provide an orbiting lunar gateway and also accomplish the first manned lunar landing in 50 years, whose team will include the first woman on the Moon.

    NASA ARTEMIS spacecraft depiction.

    Cooperation with other space agencies

    Since China has started to invest more money into space activities, the Chinese Space Agency[中国国家航天局] (CN) has sought international partnerships. ESA is, beside, The Russian Federal Space Agency Государственная корпорация по космической деятельности «Роскосмос»](RU) one of its most important partners. Two space agencies cooperated in the development of the Double Star Mission. In 2017, ESA sent two astronauts to China for two weeks sea survival training with Chinese astronauts in Yantai, Shandong.

    ESA entered into a major joint venture with Russia in the form of the CSTS, the preparation of French Guiana spaceport for launches of Soyuz-2 rockets and other projects. With India, ESA agreed to send instruments into space aboard the ISRO’s Chandrayaan-1 in 2008. ESA is also co-operating with Japan, the most notable current project in collaboration with JAXA is the BepiColombo mission to Mercury.

    European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne][Europäische Weltraumorganization](EU)/Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency [国立研究開発法人宇宙航空研究開発機構](JP) Bepicolumbo in flight illustration. Artist’s impression of BepiColombo – ESA’s first mission to Mercury. ESA’s Mercury Planetary Orbiter (MPO) will be operated from ESOC Germany.

    ESA’s Mercury Planetary Orbiter (MPO) will be operated from ESOC Germany.

    Speaking to reporters at an air show near Moscow in August 2011, ESA head Jean-Jacques Dordain said ESA and Russia’s Roskosmos space agency would “carry out the first flight to Mars together.”

     
c
Compose new post
j
Next post/Next comment
k
Previous post/Previous comment
r
Reply
e
Edit
o
Show/Hide comments
t
Go to top
l
Go to login
h
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
Cancel
%d bloggers like this: