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Munk, Walter H. (Walter Heinrich), 1917-
Oral history interview with Walter Heinrich Munk, 1997 January 8, September 16, 17, 1998 February 4 and 5.
A thorough survey of the life and work of Munk. Early life and education in Austria and the United States. 1917 to the mid-1930s; undergraduate education at California Institute of Technology; becomes graduate student at Scripps Institution of Oceanography; experience in U. S. Army; extended discussion of war-time research and Munk's loss of security clearances. Completion of Ph.D. at Scripps; extensive recollections of research and social activities at Scripps, including his impressions of Harald Sverdrup, Carl Eckart, and Roger Revelle; his development with Sverdrup during World War II of methods to predict surf conditions for Allied landings in Normandy, North Africa, and Pacific islands; of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution of European oceanographic research, 1940s and 1950s; the role of the Office of Naval Research (ONR) and Navy as a patron for science; and the personality and research of Carl-Gustav Rossby. Studies geophysical phenomena associated with U. S. atomic bomb tests at Bikini Island, mid-1940s, as well as hydrogen bomb tests in the Pacific (early 1950s). Scientific work on ocean currents (including impressions of Henry Stommel), ocean wave spectra (including Waves Across the Pacific study, 1960s), and the Acoustic Thermography of Ocean Climate (ATOC) project to investigate shifts in global ocean temperatures, including intense public controversy over this experiment involving potential harm to undersea mammals (late 1980s-1990s). Impressions of the California loyalty oath controversy, 1950s. Detailed recollections of design and construction of Institute for Geophysics and Planetary Physics (IGPP) at Scripps, including interations with Louis Slichter and Willard F. Libby, as well as research programs at the IGPP; extensive discussion of funding practices in earth sciences research in America, Europe, and the Soviet Union, particularly the role of the National Science Foundation and the philanthropist Cecil H. Green. Impressions of the Soviet Institute of Oceanography. Collaborations with Gordon MacDonald in writing 1960 book on tides and earth rotation. Impressions of social revolution of 1960s and political views at Scripps, with descriptions of meetings with Angela Davis, Eldridge Cleaver, and Herbert Marcuse. Membership in JASONS, as well as anti-JASON protests; Lengthy recollections of Maurice Ewing and the Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory; comments on SIO and IGPP directors including William Nierenberg, Ed Friedman, Freeman Gilbert, and Fred Spiess. General remarks on the social structure of American geophysics and oceanography, as well as comparisons of American and Soviet Styles of oceanograhpic research.
Geophysicist, oceanographer, Scripps Institution of Oceanography.
Eckart, Carl, 1902-1973
Ewing, W. Maurice (William Maurice), 1906-1974
Green, Cecil Howard, 1900-2003
Libby, Willard F.
Munk, Walter H. (Walter Heinrich), 1917-
Revelle, Roger, 1909-1991
Rossby, Carl-Gustaf
Slichter, Louis Byrne, 1896-1978
Stommel, Henry M., 1920-
Sverdrup, H. U. (Harald Ulrik), 1888-1957.
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
United States. Office of Naval Research
Scripps Institution of Oceanography
University of California, San Diego. Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics.
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Ocean currents -- Research.
Ocean temperature -- Research.
Oceanography -- Soviet Union.
Science -- History.
Oral histories. aat
Interviews. aat
Transcripts. aat
Geophysicists -- Interviews. lcsh
Doel, Ronald Edmund interviewer.
American Institute of Physics. Niels Bohr Library & Archives. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740, USA