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Lassonde (LE) – Earth and Atmospheric Science

Location: 102 Petrie, 416-736-5245
Chair: R.S.K. Lee
Distinguished Research Professors: J.C. McDonnell, G.G. Shepherd
Professors: A. Amirfazli, Q. Cheng, G.T. Jarvis, C. Haas, J. Kozinski, I.C. McDade, T. McElroy, S.D. Pagiatakis, M. Shoukri, P.A. Taylor
Professors Emeriti: K.D. Aldridge, J.R. Miller, G.G. Shepherd, D. Smylie
Associate Professors: C. Armenakis, S. Bisnath, M. Daly, B. Hu, M.A. Jenkins, G.P. Klaassen, R.S.K. Lee, B.M. Quine, J. Shan, A.M.K. Szeto, G. Vukovich, J.A. Whiteway, Z.H. Zhu
Assistant Professors: Y. Chen, J. Moores, G. Sohn
Associate Lecturers: H. Chesser, J.G. Wang

Offered by the Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, the program provides instruction in the fundamental sciences of the Earth and its atmosphere including structure and dynamics of the deep interior, motions in the fluid outer core and the origin and maintenance of the main magnetic field, convective motions in the solid mantle and surface plate tectonics, rotational dynamics of the Earth and space geodynamics, exploration geophysics, geographical information systems (GIS), atmospheric motions and composition, numerical modelling of atmospheric dynamics and convection, radar sounding of the atmosphere, and remote sensing of the Earth from satellites.

The Earth and Atmospheric Sciences have major applications. In Earth Science, among the most important applications are the discovery and environmentally-sound exploitation of petroleum and mineral non-renewable resources, as well sustainable management of our renewable resources which account for a very large part of the Canadian economy. Current applications to environmental assessment and monitoring and managing our urban infrastructure require extensive use of geomatics technologies, such as GPS, GIS, remote sensing and photogrammetry.

In Atmospheric Science, the most important application is weather prediction. In Canada, weather is undoubtedly one of the most influential factors in our daily social and economic activities and is also a major concern in travel safety. Increasingly, human impact on natural systems such as the ozone layer, sea levels and rain forests pose environmental hazards whose assessment depends on our understanding of the composition, chemistry and dynamics of the Earth, its atmosphere, ionosphere and magnetosphere. York graduates have been a major staffing source for weather prediction services with the Meteorological Service of Canada of the Federal Government and in private industry. They have also gone on to graduate research in the frontier science, so important to our understanding of environmental hazards.