Boston University Geologist to Receive 2004 Nevada Medal
Contact: Ann Marie Menting, 617/353-2240 | email@example.com
(Boston, Mass.) — Boston University geologist Farouk El-Baz, research professor and director of the Center for Remote Sensing, has been named to receive the Desert Research Institute’s (DRI’s) 2004 Nevada Medal. El-Baz will receive the honor in March 2004 during gala ceremonies in Reno and Las Vegas.
“I consider this recognition to be a treasured honor,” says El-Baz. “It is most satisfying to have one’s work recognized by colleagues.”
Established in 1988, DRI’s Nevada Medal is conferred annually to individuals whose research in the fields of science and engineering have significantly contributed to a better understanding of the critical scientific, environmental, or technical challenges that influence our quality of life and control of the environment. In addition, DRI’s selection committee considers the candidates’ records of public service contributions and the recognition they receive from their research peers.
El-Baz, a veteran of NASA’s Apollo Program and a pioneer in the study of Earth from space, is widely recognized for his contributions to the understanding of the origin and evolution of desert landforms in space and time. He pioneered the use of satellite images to characterize arid landforms worldwide. His research defined the role of alternating wet and dry climate cycles in desert regions and identified the forces that control the accumulation of groundwater in these regions.
El-Baz will receive the award during a three-day event that includes separate evening award ceremonies in Reno and Las Vegas. In addition, El-Baz will present the Nevada Medal Lecture during programs at DRI’s campuses in Reno and Las Vegas.
Past recipients of the Nevada Medal include James Van Allen, the astrophysicist who was pivotal to the discovery of Earth’s radiation belts; F. Sherwood Roland, the 1995 Nobel Prize winner in chemistry who determined that chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in the atmosphere act to deplete the ozone layer; and Gordon Wolman, a geomorphologist who established the relative roles that human and natural forces have in shaping the land and influencing water quality.
During the past 40 years, DRI has grown to be one of the nation’s leading research institutions. It is dedicated to increasing scientific knowledge of Earth’s environment, promoting preservation of diverse ecosystems, advancing responsible resource management, and improving human health and welfare.
Scientists in Boston University’s Center for Remote Sensing use satellite images for research investigations in archaeology, geography, and geology. Established in 1986, the Center has gained international standing and, in 1997, was selected by NASA as a “Center for Excellence in Remote Sensing.” Boston University is the fourth largest independent university in the United States, with an enrollment of more than 29,000 students in its 17 schools and colleges.