Dalhousie Prof gives science a clearer picture of Earth's atmosphere
Dalhousie University professor Randall Martin keeps his eyes on the skies to tackle two hot-button issues: human health and climate change. The atmospheric science researcher behind the world's first satellite-based estimates of global ground-level air pollution won the NSERC (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada) E.W.R Steacie Memorial Fellowship on Monday, February 27, 2012. The $250,000 award will allow him to continue improving pollution estimates and gain a better understanding of human impacts on climate change.
Randall Martin's satellite-based estimates of global ground-level pollution are being used by The World Health Organization and Health Canada to determine the health impacts of pollution. Dr. Martin is a professor of atmospheric science at Dalhousie
Dalhousie atmospheric science Professor Randall Martin will spend the next two years examining:
- Ways to improve satellite-based estimates of ground level pollution around the world (especially in places with dense human populations)
- Ways to improve the current estimates of global emissions to the atmosphere
- The effects of human activity on climate; particularly, how science can improve the accuracy of global model simulations used to predict how humans will change the climate.
- How the chemistry of the atmosphere changes the abundance of different trace gases and particles in the atmosphere.
- How we can apply satellite remote sensing to learn more about the atmosphere
"There are huge health impacts of ground-level pollution. Air pollution contributes to leading causes of death in the world such as heart disease and stroke. Excess mortality due to air pollution exceeds a million people per year; the World Health Organization estimates that more people die from air pollution than from car accidents.” - Dr. Randall Martin, Professor, Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science, Faculty of Science, Dalhousie University
"This research is important because we produce quality data that we share with people in other communities who can make the policy connections." - Dr. Randall Martin, Professor, Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science, Faculty of Science, Dalhousie University
"We assess the location and concentration of trace gases and particles in the atmosphere. Satellite remote sensing is like looking down on a murky bucket of water; you don't know where in the atmosphere the pollution is, so we use a model to estimate the fraction at the ground where people live." - Dr. Randall Martin, Professor, Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science, Faculty of Science, Dalhousie University
"Dr. Martin is deeply committed to developing our knowledge of the global atmosphere. The impact of his research has far-reaching significance for health and the environment. He has already made more contributions in his short career than many scientists do in a lifetime and is highly deserving of the award. I look forward to his continued development as an outstanding scientist." - Dr. Chris Moore, Dean, Faculty of Science, Dalhousie University
"The E.W.R. Steacie Memorial Fellowships are awarded to promising young scientists and engineers who are making a great impact in their field and developing international reputations. These fellowships allow them the freedom to pursue their interests wholeheartedly, so that the research community and Canadians can benefit from the advances they contribute." - Suzanne Fortier, President, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).
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Randall Martin explaining how he uses models in his research
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Randall Martin stands in front of a visual display of global pollutants
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Randall Martin in a lab
- Regis Dudley, Communications Officer, Dalhousie University, 902.494.4105, firstname.lastname@example.org