Nobel Prize in Physics awarded to Dr Shukuro Manabe

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2021 was awarded to Dr. Shukuro Manabe, Senior Meteorologist at Princeton University, and Honorary Member of the Meteorological Society of Japan. The Society congratulates him on his great achievement.

After earning a doctoral degree at the University of Tokyo, Manabe moved to the United States in 1958. Then over sixty years he has devoted himself to modeling and simulation studies on the climate system and its variability as well as its anthropogenic change at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and at Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Princeton University. In the 1960s he developed a one-dimensional radiative–convective equilibrium model to clarify how a typical vertical temperature profile of the Earth’s atmosphere is formed, and it was used for the first-time quantitative estimate of surface air temperature increase with doubling atmospheric carbon dioxide. Exploiting the increasing computational power, he led the development of a three-dimensional atmosphere–ocean coupled model into the 1980s. He then utilized the model to enthusiastically conduct research on the response of the climate system to increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide for gaining its physical understanding. His pioneering work mentioned above is recognized as the scientific basis of the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) Assessment Reports to date. In fact, the Nobel Committee for Physics pointed out that “His work laid the foundation for the development of current climate models” in the press release.

The Meteorological Society of Japan awarded the Fujiwhara Award to Manabe in 1966 and nominated him as an Honorary Member in 2001.

The Society hopes Manabe as one of the pioneers in meteorology to keep active and wishes him good health for years to come.