Distinguished Research Professor 2016
Thomas Mote, professor of geography, is a world-renowned expert on the impact of climate change and variability on the Earth’s water cycle, particularly the “cryosphere,” which includes ice sheets, glaciers, sea ice and snow cover. Some of his most notable work involves the impact of large-scale changes in atmospheric pressure and winds on the loss of ice from the Greenland ice sheet. Increased ice melt leads to greater runoff of meltwater, which contributes to global sea level rise. Mote uses satellite data to track changes in surface melting on the Greenland ice sheet and he has developed cutting-edge techniques and algorithms used by the scientific community to understand Greenland’s response to a changing climate. His work has helped scientists better understand how a pattern of atmospheric circulation known as the North Atlantic Oscillation can lead to massive melt events.
Creative Research Medal 2013