• Wednesday, October 27, 2021

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Syukoro Manabe (Center) participating in the Press Conference at Princeton University USA on 05 Oct 2021.


A Meteorologist is one who studies weather and climate. Half of 2021 Nobel Prize in Physics is shared by two Meteorologists: Syukoro Manabe and Klaus Hasselmann. The other half is shared by Physicist Giorgio Parisi. Both Manabe and Hasselmann are climate scientists. Manabe is a Japanese American climate scientist. The Physics Noble Prize winners are announced each year in early October. This reorganization is indicative of the gradually increasing scientific trust in the global warming of climate. In this blog, I am going to briefly mention some of the contributions of Manabe, with embedded links pointing to several recent videos and key papers of Manabe for curious readers.

In early 1960s, that is, some 60 years ago, Manabe and his collaborators extended the numerical weather prediction models to predict the climate of the globe as a whole, using early era computers. A main scientific task solved by Manabe and his collaborators was to predict the consequences of rise in atmospheric Carbon Dioxide concentration on various Meteorological variables such as temperature and precipitation. They used convective radiative equilibrium to predict the vertical temperature profile of atmosphere under increasing greenhouse gases such as Carbon Dioxide. The then general circulation models used by Manabe and his collaborators have coarse spatial resolution.

In next several decades, Manabe and his collaborators worked out the effects of global warming on a large number of climatic variables relevant for vast majority of applications such as agriculture and hydrological cycle. In particular, the polar amplification of global warming was predicated, which was confirmed later, as essentially no or very sparse observations of relevant climatic variables were available in polar regions in 1970s and 1980s. After 1980s, satellite-based observations helped to clarify the role of global warming on climate, as worked out earlier by Manabe and his collaborators. Some other relevant variables studied by Manabe et al. include run off, polar ice sheet thickness, geographical soil moisture distribution, and spatio-temporal distribution of global precipitation.  


This blog is written by Prof. Dr. Athar Hussain at Department of Meteorology and Centre for Climate Research and Development for information purpose only in October 2021.