Andrew P. Ingersoll, California Institute of Technology

Geological and Planetary Sciences Professor Pasadena, California api@gps.caltech.edu Office: (626) 395-6167

Bio/Research

Planetary meteorologist Andrew Ingersoll has been a leader in the investigation of planetary atmospheres for more than four decades. He works to understand how atmospheres function, to classify their behavior, and to develop explanatory numerical models. Ingersoll has studied the role of the ocea...

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Bio/Research

Planetary meteorologist Andrew Ingersoll has been a leader in the investigation of planetary atmospheres for more than four decades. He works to understand how atmospheres function, to classify their behavior, and to develop explanatory numerical models. Ingersoll has studied the role of the oceans in climate change, the dynamics of ice age cycles, and intra-seasonal oscillations of the tropical atmosphere. His research has also included studies of the runaway greenhouse effect on Venus, the occurrence of liquid water on Mars, the supersonic winds on Jupiter's moon Io, and the atmospheric dynamics of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. He participated on the instrument teams for many NASA/JPL missions including Pioneer Venus, Pioneer Saturn, Voyager, Mars Global Surveyor, Galileo, and Cassini.

Now, his expertise in atmospheric systems at a planetary scale has become crucial here at home. Beyond the social and environmental imperatives involved, though, study of the Earth interests Ingersoll on a purely scientific level. Of the twelve planetary objects with atmospheres that have been visited by spacecraft, the Earth has the most unpredictable weather. It also absorbs energy at a higher rate (power per unit area) than any other planet with an atmosphere. Its large-scale weather patterns (jet streams) are also the most slow-moving of any planetary circulations


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