Professor Susan Solomon
Lee and Geraldine Martin Professor of Environmental Studies
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Susan Solomon is the Lee and Geraldine Martin Professor of Environmental Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Prior to coming to MIT in 2012, she was a scientist at NOAA in Boulder, Colorado and an adjunct professor at the University of Colorado from 1982-2011. Solomon is widely recognized as one of the leaders in the field of atmospheric science. Her scientific papers have provided not only key measurements but also theoretical understanding regarding ozone destruction, especially the role of surface chemistry. In l986 and l987, she served as the Head Project Scientist of the National Ozone Expedition at McMurdo Station, Antarctica and made some of the first measurements there that pointed towards chlorofluorocarbons as the cause of the ozone hole. In l994, an Antarctic glacier was named in her honor in recognition of that work. In March of 2000, she received the National Medal of Science, the United States' highest scientific honor, for "key insights in explaining the cause of the Antarctic ozone hole."
She is the recipient of many other honors and awards, including the highest awards of the American Geophysical Union (the Bowie Medal), the American Meteorological Society (the Rossby Medal), and the Geochemical Society (the Goldschmidt Medal). She also received the Grande Medaille of the Academy of Sciences in Paris for her leadership in ozone and climate science in 2008 and the Crafoord Prize of the Swedish Academy of Sciences in 2018. Awarded by the King of Sweden, the Crafoord prize is considered the closest geosciences equivalent of the Nobel prize. In 2004 she received the prestigious Blue Planet Prize for "pioneering research identifying the causative mechanisms producing the Antarctic ozone hole”, and in 2013, she was honored as the BBVA’s
laureate in the Frontiers of Knowledge award in the climate change category. She is also a recipient of numerous honorary doctoral degrees from universities in the US and abroad. She is a member of the U. S. National Academy of Sciences, the American
Philosophical Society, and is a Foreign Associate of the French Academy of Sciences, the Royal Society, the Royal Society of Chemistry, and the European Academy of Sciences. Her current research includes climate change and ozone depletion. She served as co-chair of the Fourth Assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2007) climate science report, providing scientific information to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. She was named one of the year’s 100 most influential people in Time magazine in 2008.