MIT Climate Change Blog

James Hansen to Deliver the 2015 David J. Rose Lectureship in Nuclear Technology

March 17, 2015

2015 David J. Rose Lectureship in Nuclear Technology
Tuesday April 14 at 4:00 PM. MIT Wong Auditorium E51-115

Climate Change and Energy: 
How Can Young People Take Ownership of Their Future?
By Dr. James Hansen

Dr. James Hansen, formerly Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, where he directs the Program on Climate Science, Awareness and Solutions. He was trained in physics and astronomy in the space science program of Dr. James Van Allen at the University of Iowa. His early research on the clouds of Venus helped identify their composition as sulfuric acid. Since the late 1970s, he has focused his research on Earth’s climate, especially human-made climate change.

Dr. Hansen is best known for his testimony on climate change to congressional committees in the 1980s that helped raise broad awareness of the global warming issue.

He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1995 and was designated by Time Magazine in 2006 as one of the 100 most influential people on Earth. He has received numerous awards including the Carl-Gustaf Rossby and Roger Revelle Research Medals, the Sophie Prize and the Blue Planet Prize. Dr. Hansen is widely recognized for his efforts to outline actions that the public must take to protect the future of young people and other life on our planet.

Dr. Hansen’s website.


David J. Rose Lectureship in Nuclear Technology

This distinguished lectureship honors the memory of David J. Rose (1922-1985), a renowned professor of nuclear engineering at MIT. The lectureship was established in December 1984 on the occasion of Professor Rose's retirement and in recognition of his work in fusion technology, energy, nuclear waste disposal, and his concern with ethical problems arising from advances in science and technology.

Professor Rose received his B.A.Sc. degree in engineering physics from the University of British Columbia in 1947 and his Ph.D. degree in Physics from MIT in 1950. When the Department of Nuclear Engineering at MIT was formed in 1958, David Rose was invited to join the faculty. He went on to lead the development of the Department’s program in plasmas and controlled fusion, and remained a member of the MIT faculty for the rest of his professional career.

Professor Rose's professional life encompassed three distinguished careers: scientist and engineer; technology/policy analyst; and bridge builder between the scientific and theological communities. He authored over 150 articles ranging from high technology to theology, and with Melville Clark wrote Plasmas and Controlled Fusion, which became the standard textbook in the field of fusion energy. Professor Rose's book, Learning About Energy, which drew on two decades of research and teaching on energy technology and policy, was published posthumously. Before joining the MIT faculty, Professor Rose was a member of the technical staff at Bell Labs. While on leave from MIT in the early 1970s he served as the first Director of the Office of Long Range Planning at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He was honored as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Fellow of the American Physical Society and a Fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science. In 1975 Professor Rose received the Arthur Holly Compton Award of the American Nuclear Society for excellence in teaching, and at MIT he was the recipient of the James R. Killian Faculty Achievement Award in 1979-80. In 1986, the Board of Directors of Fusion Power Associates established a prize to be presented annually for excellence in fusion engineering in honor of Professor Rose.

The Rose Lecture, which is presented every two years, was established to honor the late Professor David J. Rose on the occasion of his retirement from the Nuclear Science and Engineering Department in 1984.  David dedicated his career at MIT to energy resources and their impact on the environment, nuclear fuel cycle issues, fusion technology, and the ethical questions arising from advances in science and technology.   In the late 70s and early 80s he carried out some of the earliest energy modeling studies to address the climate change problem.  
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