Physics Department Seminar University of Alaska Fairbanks

J O U R N A L    C L U B


Space Physics in the Earliest Days, as I Experience AGU 100-y Anniversary paper

Syun Akasofu
Director Emeritus GI and IARC, UAF



The emergence of a new scientific field provides us with an interesting opportunity to observe and participate. I was fortunate to participate in establishing the field of Space Physics. This talk is intended to illustrate how a new field can be established, rather than what I contributed to the emergence.

A new field is hardly initiated from nothing. Combining a few well-developed fields to integrate them into a new field is not an easy task.

Space Physics is a good example in this regard; there had been the field of geomagnetism, ionospheric physics, auroral physics. I found that electric currents are the common element to combine the three fields, as suggested by H. Alfven. Satellites as a new tool have been most useful because those early researchers had long been looking for such a tool.


Friday, 17 Jan. 2020

Globe Room, Elvey Building