Nobel Prize in Physics to Manabe, Hasselmann and Parisi for his studies on earthly climate and other physical systems

The Royal Academy of Sciences of Sweden has granted the Nobel Prize for Physics 2021 to Syukuro Manabe scientists, Klaus Hasselmann and Giorgio Parisi, "by imp

Nobel Prize in Physics to Manabe, Hasselmann and Parisi for his studies on earthly climate and other physical systems

The Royal Academy of Sciences of Sweden has granted the Nobel Prize for Physics 2021 to Syukuro Manabe scientists, Klaus Hasselmann and Giorgio Parisi, "by important contributions to the understanding of complex physical systems," the Nobel Committee has announced before noon.

Manabe and Hasselmann share half of the award "by physical modeling of terrestrial climate, quantify their variability and reliably predict global warming". Paris has received the other half "by the discovery of the interaction of disorder and fluctuations in physical systems, from the atomic scale to the planetary", as explained by the jury.

Complex systems that are characterized by arbitrariness and disorder suppose a challenge for researchers in all disciplines. One of them - vital importance to humanity - is the climate of the planet. In the 1960s, Japanese's jobs Syukuro Manaba at Princeton University seated the foundations for the development of the first climate models.

Manaba worked in some of the first projections on terrestrial climate and was one of the pioneers to demonstrate that the increase in CO2 levels in the atmosphere leads to an increase in temperatures on the planet's surface, as well as the paper that Burning fossil fuels plays in the process. "He was also one of the first to explore the interaction between the balance of radiation and the vertical transport of air masses," the jury reminded.

A decade after the German Klaus Hasselmann picked up the witness and developed at the Max Planck Institute a model related to atmospheric time and climate, demonstrating that it was possible to create reliable climate models, despite the changing character and, in appearance, unpredictable climate. Hasselmann is the author of the method called 'fingerprinting' (fingerprints), which allows to distinguish between the natural variability of the climate and the disturbance caused by the increase of greenhouse gases.

His investigations have been fundamental to demonstrate that the increase in temperature of the atmosphere is due to carbon dioxide emissions linked to human activity. "The award-winning discoveries are the demonstration that our climate knowledge is based on a solid scientific basis, based on a rigorous analysis of observations," has underlined Thors Hans Hansson, president of the Nobel Physics Committee, during the Announcement of the fault.

For its part, Giorgio Paris's investigations have focused on quantum theory, statistical mechanics and complex systems. In the 80s he discovered patterns in disordered materials; Discoveries listed between the most important contributions to the theory of complex systems, which have allowed to understand and describe many different and apparently randomized materials and phenomena, not only in physics but also in other very different areas, such as mathematics, biology, Neuroscience and automatic learning.

In fact, Paris began his career at the Sapienza University of Rome dedicated to particle physics, although his line of research was expanding many other subfields. At the end of the 70 he began to focus complex systems. He discovered a type of hidden and counterintuitive order in the interactions of many objects: Although in the simplest systems - such as magnetic materials - atoms tend to align in parallel, in complex systems their distribution is less predictable.

However, Paris found that, even in the most complex systems, atoms respond to a type of identifiable symmetry when the distribution of individual atoms is compared at different scales. That discovery turned out to be very useful to analyze systems that at first glance seems completely random.

The researches of Paris, which examine the disorder and underlying fluctuations, have been used to predict behaviors in contexts of great uncertainty. Precisely the link between the work of it and that of the two other awarded is that fluctuations are key to improve predictability in the models. In Declarations via Telefónica from Roma Parisi, which will take half of the 10 million Swedish crowns of the prize (986,000 euros), explained that, although no recognition expected, "I knew it had any chance, so I always had the Phone close ".

Last year, the Royal Swedish Science Academy had recognized another terna from scientists: the British Roger Penrose, to the German Reinhard Genzel and the American Andrea Ghez, three pioneers in the investigation of the black holes. Astronomy had also been rewarded in 2019, by the discovery of the first exoplanet. This year the prize, linked directly to climate science, arrives at a crucial time, only a few weeks after the 26th United Nations Climate Conference to be held in Glasgow (United Kingdom). "It is very urgent that we make a very firm decision and let's advance at a good pace," said Parisi, "for future generations, we have to act very quickly."

"Three laureates share the Nobel Prize for Physics this year for their studies of chaotic and apparently random phenomena. Syukuro Manaba and Klaus Hasselmann seated the foundations of our knowledge of the climate of land and how humanity influences it. Giorgio Parisi is awarded Its revolutionary contributions to the theory of disorderly materials and random processes, "explained the Nobel Committee.

Syukuro Manaba was born in 1931 in Shingu, Japan. He received himself in 1957 from the University of Tokyo and at present he is a senior meteorologist at Princeton University. Klaus Hasselmann was born in 1931 in Hamburg, Germany, and was a doctorate in 1957 at the University of Gotingen. Both the year of birth and that of presentation of the doctoral thesis of Him coincide with those of Manabe, with whom he shares now Nobel. Hasselmann is now Professor at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology.

Giorgio Parisi, who will take half of the 10 million Swedish crowns (almost one million euros) that accompany the Nobel, was born in Rome, Italy, in 1948. Since 1970, he is a doctor from Sapienza University, in which now He exercises as a professor.

Two of the three winners of the Nobel, Klaus Hasselmann and Syukuru Manabe, were previously awarded with the border awards of knowledge, which grants the BBVA Foundation, in the category of Climate Change. Hasselmann won the second edition of this award, while Manaba was distinguished in the ninth edition, both for the contributions of him to the study of climate change, including the verification that global warming is attributable, mainly, to human action.

On Monday, the Swedish institution granted the Nobel de Medicine to scientists David Julius (New York, USA, 1955) and ARDEM Patapoutian (Beirut, Lebanon, 1967) for unraveling the mechanisms that allow us to feel the cold, heat, pressure or the pain.

Updated Date: 09 October 2021, 04:22

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