WxTalk Webinar #18


Webinar # 18 - Thursday, May 9, 2013

At the Cutting Edge: Harry Wexler and the Emergence of Atmospheric Science

Jim Fleming,
Colby College, Waterville, ME


"This presentation tells the story of the emergence of the new interdisciplinary field of atmospheric science in the twentieth century as shaped by the  influences of multiple technologies.  It does so from the perspective of MIT-trained meteorologist Harry Wexler (1911-1962), an American student of the Bergen School of air mass analysis, head of research in the US Weather Bureau, and one of the most influential meteorologists of the twentieth century, whose career spanned the middle decades of the twentieth century.
In the first four decades of the twentieth century, aviation, radio communication and remote sensing, and the needs of two world wars dramatically re-shaped and expanded the meteorological enterprise.  During the Cold War era, new technologies involving atomic energy, digital computing, rocketry and satellites provided meteorologists with powerful tools to study the atmosphere and precipitated fundamental changes in the older traditions of aeronomy, climatology, and weather analysis and forecasting.
Much is to be learned by examining the nexus of new techniques and technologies in the early and middle decades of the twentieth century as they contributed to the transformation of meteorological science, service, and practice into a new synthetic field called “atmospheric science.” Yet the story of the emergence of atmospheric science is so complex, dauntingly so, that it has never been told in its entirety.  By telling the story through Wexler’s eyes, a more personal story can be told."

View the Webinar by clicking here: http://youtu.be/O-MqY0y1rt8


Jim's historical books: http://www.amazon.com/James-Rodger-Fleming/e/B001H6S3B4