Reading scientists earn awards from the Royal Meteorological Society for world-leading research
Release Date 03 April 2017
The University of Reading’s reputation as a world-leading centre for Meteorology research has been enhanced after three of its academics were given awards by the Royal Meteorological Society (RMetS).
Professor Suzanne Gray, Dr Ed Hawkins and Professor Anthony Illingworth, from the University’s Department of Meteorology, were all recognised in the 2016 awards.
Professor Gray won the prestigious Buchan Prize. This is awarded to RMetS Fellows whose papers, published during the last five years in the society’s journals, are adjudged to have contained the most important contributions to meteorology. Professor Gray and her group investigate complex characteristics of weather systems including ground-breaking research into ‘sting jets’, compact regions of extreme surface winds associated with storms affecting the UK and often the cause of substantial damage and insurance losses.
Dr Hawkins won the Climate Science Communications Award, recognising his work in presenting science to the general public in an engaging and impactful way. Notable among this work is his award-winning spiral graph illustrating the rise in global temperatures since 1850, which was used in the opening ceremony of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil. His Climate Lab Book blog, use of citizen science and efforts to update the pioneering work of Guy Stewart Callendar, who first developed the theory that carbon dioxide levels had a direct impact on global temperature, were also cited.
Professor Illingworth won the Quarterly Journal Editor’s Award for his ‘significant contribution to the journal or editorial process’. A previous recipient of the society’s Mason Gold Medal, Professor Illingworth has made seminal contributions to meteorology including pioneering use of radar to help in the measurement, understanding and predictability of cloud systems and precipitation.
"The research done by our world class scientists is helping shape our understanding of global weather systems and the impact of climate change" - Professor Ben Cosh, University of Reading
The awards will be presented at the RMetS 2017 AGM in London on 17 May.
Professor Ben Cosh, Head of the School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences, said: “The research done by our world class scientists is helping shape our understanding of global weather systems and the impact of climate change.
"This individual recognition by the Royal Meteorological Society is well deserved, and underlines the importance of the work being carried out every day at the University.”
Two of Britain’s other leading meteorologists with strong links to Reading have also been honoured. Professor Dame Julia Slingo, former Chief Scientist at the Met Office and a Visiting Professor and Honorary Graduate at the University, was made an Honorary Fellow. Her successor as Chief Scientist, Professor Stephen Belcher, who previously worked in Reading’s Department of Meteorology, has also been recognised with the Adrian Gill Prize.