Taroh Matsuno, Director-General of the Frontier Research System for
Global Change (FRSGC) has been selected as a Honorary Member of the American
Meteorological Society (AMS).
The AMS, one of the leading professional societies for atmospheric and
related sciences in the United States, bestows the prestigious life-long
title to a few scientists who have made the outstanding accomplishment
on researches on atmosphere and ocean, as well as meteorology-related
researches, which contributed greatly to the development of meteorology.
Past recipients includes famous Novel-Prize winners such as Dr. E.V. Appleton,
who discovered the ionosphere. Matsuno is the fifth to receive this honor,
after the late professor Shigetaka Syono of the University of Tokyo, a
pioneer on the dynamic meteorology in Japan, who contributed to the growth
of eminent scientists, the late professor Tetsuya Fujita of the University
of Chicago, known as "Dr. Tornado", Dr. Akio Alakawa, Professor
Emeritus of University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), who are a
pioneer on the development of Atmospheric General Circulation Model (AGCM),
and Dr. Shukuro Manabe, one of the leading scientists on the development
of Atmospheric-Ocean General Circulation Model and research on global
warming, who served as a Program Director of the Global Warming Research
Program at FRSGC.
Also , Matsuno has been awarded the Carl-Gustaf Rossby Medal in 1999,
which is presented to individuals on the basis of outstanding contributions
to the understanding of the structure or behavior of the atmosphere, for
his "Fundamental contributions to the theory of waves and wave flow
interaction in geophysical systems" from the AMS in 1999. Matsuno's
honors in Japan are Societal Award and Fujiwara Award from Meteorological
Society of Japan, and Japan Academy Prize.
His doctoral thesis published in 1966 was the first thorough study of
large-scale atmospheric and oceanic waves in the equatorial area in which
he has shown that particular types of waves exist in the equatorial region
and propagate eastward or westward along the "equatorial duct."
Those theoretically predicted wave motions were discovered later both
in the atmosphere and in the oceans and it turned out that they play important
roles in various phenomena, such as El Nino. Among various studies he
has conducted, another important work is the theoretical and numerical
modeling study of sudden stratospheric warmings. The temperature rises
40-50 C in a few days, which takes place in the mid-winder occasionally.
His expertise includes meteorology, especially on large-scale dynamics,
and climate dynamics.
After graduated from the University of Tokyo in 1966, Matsuno taught at
Kyushu University, University of Tokyo, and Hokkaido University. He also
served as the Director of the Center for Climate System Research, the
University of Tokyo. After retiring the professor's post at Hokkaido University
in 1998, he has been serving as the Director-General of FRSGC, and also
as the Director of Integrated Modeling Research Program as an additional
About this honorary news, Matsuno says:
"I am very greatful to receive this honor. I got interested in the
meteorology in my junior high school year, and more than a half century
has passed since I have involved in this field of meteorology and related
studies such as climate change and global environment. I am very happy
that I have been able to pursue my career on what I really like."