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Department of Meteorology celebrates 40 years – University of Reading

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Department of Meteorology celebrates 40 years

Release Date 02 May 2006

sunriseMeteorological demonstrations, a pantomime and a cake-cutting ceremony are among a series of events being held to celebrate the 40th birthday of the University of Reading's world-renowned Department of Meteorology on Friday 5 May and Saturday 6 May. The Department is the only one of its kind in the UK to offer a full range of undergraduate and postgraduate degree courses in meteorology, and is internationally known for its training and research in weather, climate and physical oceanography. The Department was recently awarded a distinguished 2006 Queen's Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education. The events will kick off on Friday 5 May with 'A Celebration of Scientific Success'. The day will consist of a series of special talks by speakers who have been strongly associated with the Department during its 40 years. The talks will reflect the wide range of atmospheric and oceanic science that has characterised the department during its existence. On Saturday 6 May, past and present staff and students will be on campus to meet old friends, see meteorological demonstrations and displays, and listen to a series of talks on 'hot topics' in meteorology. The day will end with birthday cake and a speech from Professor Keith Shine, Head of the Department. The Mayor of Reading and the Chairman of Wokingham District Council are amongst the dignitaries who will be present. Professor Shine said: "This Department has a long and illustrious history and we wanted to mark the occasion and look forward to another successful 40 years. The events in May will be both an opportunity to learn a bit more about the depth and breadth of research in an area of such importance to society, and a chance to have some fun." Research within Reading's Department of Meteorology focuses on the fundamental understanding of the physics of the atmosphere and oceans, and it has contributed significantly to the understanding and predicting of air quality, weather systems and climate change. Important research centres, funded by the Government's Natural Environment Research Council, designed to improve the national capability in atmospheric science, are based at Reading and there is considerable interaction with Met Office research scientists working in the Department. One of the areas in which the Department has contributed is in the understanding of the differential effects of emissions of different greenhouse gases, which is needed by the Kyoto Protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. After graduating from its uniquely broad range of undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes, its alumni have gone on to serve in weather services, environmental agencies, government and industry, both in the UK and overseas. End Notes for editors The programme of events over the two days are as follows: Friday 5 May Talks in Madejski Lecture Theatre, Department of Agriculture CHAIR: Alan Thorpe (Chief Executive, Natural Environment Research Council) 2pm Introduction by Prof Ian James (Head of School of Maths, Meteorology and Physics, University of Reading) 2.10pm Brian Hoskins (Department of Meteorology, University of Reading), There will be an answer – PV 2.40pm Huw Davies (Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, ETH Zurich), Dynamics of large-scale weather systems 3.10pm David Burridge (WMO Thorpex), High impact weather forecasts 3.40pm-4.10pm Break CHAIR: Lesley Gray (CGAM, Department of Meteorology, University of Reading) 4.10pm Yadvinder Malhi (School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford), Influences of the terrestrial biosphere on the atmosphere 4.40pm David Karoly (School of Meteorology, University of Oklahoma), A brief history of detection and attribution of climate change 5.10pm Peter Rhines (Oceanography and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington), Climate: An argument between ocean and atmosphere? 6pm-7pm Wine Reception, sponsored by Q Associates, in Meteorology Building with Vice-Chancellor Professor Gordon Marshall in attendance. Saturday 6 May Talks in Sutcliffe Lecture Theatre, 11.30-3pm: 11.30 Storm forecasting (Prof Anthony Illingworth & Dr Cyril Morcrette) 12.30 Pollution: From City Streets to the Global State (Prof Alan O'Neill & Dr Janet Barlow) 1.30 Climate Change (Dr Jonathan Gregory & Dr Rowan Sutton) 2.30 Current Weather (Dr Maarten Ambaum & Dr Robin Hogan) Atmospheric Observatory (follow signs), 11am - 3pm: Ongoing displays and demonstrations Marquee, sponsored by Biral, 11am-3.30pm: 11-12 Teas and Coffees 12-2 Buffet lunch 1pm The Departmental Choir 2pm Pantomime entertainment by members of the Department 2-3 Teas and Coffees 3-3.30 Prof Keith Shine - Cake cutting, speech and sparkling wine Members of the media are welcome to attend any part of the celebrations but must confirm beforehand. Please contact: Dr David Stephenson, Reader in the Department of Meteorology T: 0118 378 6296 E: Craig Hillsley, University press officer T: 0118 378 7388 E: Web information: Department of Meteorology homepage: 40th anniversary page:

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