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Barry Saltzman and the Theory of Climate
Journal of Climate
  • Kirk A. Maasch, University of Maine - Main
  • R. J. Oglesby
  • A. Fournier
Document Type
Publication Date
Abstract/ Summary
Barry Saltzman was a giant in the fields of meteorology and climate science. A leading figure in the study of weather and climate for over 40 yr, he has frequently been referred to as the "father of modern climate theory." Ahead of his time in many ways, Saltzman made significant contributions to our understanding of the general circulation and spectral energetics budget of the atmosphere, as well as climate change across a wide spectrum of time scales. In his endeavor to develop a unified theory of how the climate system works, lie played a role in the development of energy balance models, statistical dynamical models, and paleoclimate dynamical models. He was a pioneer in developing meteorologically motivated dynamical systems, including the progenitor of Lorenz's famous chaos model. In applying his own dynamical-systems approach to long-term climate change, he recognized the potential for using atmospheric general circulation models in a complimentary way. In 1998, he was awarded the Carl-Gustaf Rossby medal, the highest honor of the American Meteorological Society "for his life-long contributions to the study of the global circulation and the evolution of the earth's climate." In this paper, the authors summarize and place into perspective some of the most significant contributions that Barry Saltzman made during his long and distinguished career. This short review also serves as an introduction to the papers in this special issue of the Journal of Climate dedicated to Barry's memory.
Citation/Publisher Attribution
Maasch, KA, Oglesby, RJ, and Fournier, A, 2005, Barry Saltzman and the Theory of Climate: Journal of Climate, v. 18, p. 2141-2150. Available on publisher's site at:
Publisher Statement
© Copyright 2005 American Meteorological Society
publisher's version of the published document
Citation Information
Kirk A. Maasch, R. J. Oglesby and A. Fournier. "Barry Saltzman and the Theory of Climate" Journal of Climate Vol. 18 Iss. 13 (2005) p. 2141 - 2150
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