Distinguished Research Lecture 2014: Peter Molnar
The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research is pleased to announce that this year's Distinguished Research Lecturer will be Professor Peter Molnar of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences and the Department of Geological Science. Few scientists have consistently tackled as broad a spectrum of challenging problems in the physics of Earth at such a fundamental level as Professor Molnar. What distinguishes him from other leading Earth scientists is the remarkable range of tools that he brings to his work; his observational skills in seismology, tectonic physics, and geological field work; and his extensive theoretical abilities that allow contributions to understanding the related heat and mass transfer mechanisms in solid earth, the oceans, and the atmosphere. Professor Molnar's exemplary scholarship and service reflect the best the university has to offer.
This fall's lecture is 'Did the emergence of Indonesian islands (the Maritime Continent) transform a warm world to one with recurring Ice Ages?' Professor Molnar will argue that when the Maritime Continent arose from the sea 3 million years ago, it transformed tropical climates, which then, due to prevailing atmospheric circulation patterns, led to the high-latitude cooling over Canada that made the ice ages possible.