Carolyn Butler of the NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va. will give a presentation entitled “Global Warming or Global Conspiracy?” on the campus of Converse College Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. in Hartness Auditorium. Her presentation, which is free and open to the public, is sponsored by the Converse Science Forum and West Lecture Series. For more information, call (864) 596-9120.
Butler works in the Atmospheric Sciences Department at NASA, a group that uses lasers from aircraft to measure ozone and particles above and below the airplane. “Typically, about once a year (sometimes more or sometimes less) we participate in an international experiment to study some aspect of the atmosphere,” she said. “A number of researchers from NASA centers, other US agencies, universities (domestic and foreign), etc. are selected to measure gases and particles or to generate model simulations. These field missions might include one or more aircraft, ground site measurements, ship-borne measurements, and satellites. The purpose of the experiment may be very specific, such as a 1997 mission to Antarctica to determine what was causing the ozone hole. But usually, the focus is more broad and is designed to gain a better understanding of the natural and anthropogenic processes of the atmosphere in a particular region, to obtain better data to be used in 3-D circulation/chemical models, and to validate satellite instruments.