February 07, 2003
As a dry Southern California braces for a possible return to wet weather next week, a NASA oceanographer known for studying how Earth's oceans affect our weather and climate and govern the El Niño/La Niña phenomena will present a free public lecture titled, "When the Pacific Speaks, the World Listens," at 2:45 p.m., Sunday, February 9, at the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center.
Dr. Bill Patzert of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., will explain how JPL satellite technology is used to map Earth's oceans. These data are a vital tool for oceanographers, meteorologists and climatologists. Monitoring the formation and progress of phenomenon like this year's moderate El Niño has improved long-term global weather and climate forecasts. Patzert will discuss impacts of El Niño, La Niña and even longer-term climate trends on Southern California, the United States and the world.
Patzert began his oceanography career in the early 1970s. A 20-year JPL employee, he was formerly on the faculty of the University of California's Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, Calif. He holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics and physics from Purdue University, Lafayette, Ind., and master's and doctorate degrees in oceanography from the University of Hawaii. The author of numerous oceanography publications, he has been honored several times by NASA and other organizations for his contributions to satellite oceanography. He regularly works with students around the world and his climate expertise is often sought by reporters.
Patzert's presentation is part of the American Meteorological Society's WeatherFest weather and science fair, dedicated to exploring the fascinating field of meteorology and oceanography. This free event is open to the public and runs from Noon to 4 p.m. JPL and other NASA centers will be among the exhibitors. The Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center is located at 300 East Ocean Boulevard. Parking is available at the Center for $8.00 or you may use the free Long Beach Passport Bus. For more information, see: www.ametsoc.org/AMS/meet/83rdannual/2ndweatherfest.html .
The California Institute of Technology in Pasadena manages JPL for NASA.
Contacts: JPL/Alan Buis (818) 354-0474