American Philosophical Society
Member History

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1. Mathematical and Physical Sciences[X]
105. Physical Earth Sciences[X]
1Name:  Dr. Wallace S. Broecker
 Institution:  Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University
 Year Elected:  2015
 Class:  1. Mathematical and Physical Sciences
 Subdivision:  105. Physical Earth Sciences
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Deceased
 Birth Date:  1931
 Death Date:  February 18, 2019
For more than half a century Wally Broecker devoted his life to study of the role of the oceans in climate change. By using isotopic analysis to study physical mixing and chemical cycling in the ocean, he developed a picture of the ocean’s thermohaline circulations as comprising a conveyor belt. He showed this global conveyor belt to be susceptible to sudden shifts from one mode to another, and in the process able to trigger changes in climate that are not slow to develop but instead abrupt. This conceptual framework, which he outlined in more than 450 papers and ten books, provides an essential starting point for our present-day understanding of climate, dating back to the Pleistocene and extending forward to its long-term future outlook. Broecker was a recipient of the National Medal of Science (1996) and numerous other honors. Wallace Broecker died February 18, 2019 in Manhattan at the age of 87.
2Name:  Dr. Tim Palmer
 Institution:  Jesus College, University of Oxford
 Year Elected:  2015
 Class:  1. Mathematical and Physical Sciences
 Subdivision:  105. Physical Earth Sciences
 Residency:  International
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1952
Tim Palmer is a Royal Society Research Professor in Climate Physics at the University of Oxford. Tim’s doctoral research was in general relativity where he formulated the first quasi-local expressions for gravitational energy momentum in generic space times. After his PhD, he moved into weather and climate research. Amongst his research achievements, he discovered the world’s largest breaking waves (in the stratosphere) and established the role of Atlantic ocean variability as a causal factor for long-term drought in the African Sahel. Tim worked at the UK Met Office and the European Centre for Medium Range Weather forecasts where he pioneered studies to quantify the predictability of the climate system, leading the group which developed operational ensemble-based probabilistic weather and climate prediction in the medium, monthly and seasonal timescales. On returning to Oxford in 2010, Tim’s research interests have included the development of stochastic parametrisation in weather and climate models, and the application of ideas in inexact computing for high-resolution weather and climate prediction. He continued his work on fundamental physics developing deterministic methods based on topological models of the p-adic integers, to reformulate quantum theory as a realistic locally causal theory. Tim contributed to all five IPCC Working Group One assessment reports and led two European Union Climate Projects. He has won the top prizes of the American Meteorological Society and the European Meteorological Society, and won the Dirac Gold Medal of the Institute of Physics, for his work on probabilistic weather and climate prediction. He does a considerable amount of outreach work both on climate change, and on chaos theory. He was elected to the Royal Society in 2003 and was President of the Royal Meteorological Society from 2010-2012. In 2015 he became Commander of the British Empire as part of the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List. In 2019 was elected an international honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and in 2020 was elected an international member of the US National Academy of Sciences. Tim Palmer was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society in 2015.
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