03/05/2007 08:00:00

Watson Lecture: Global Climate Change

PASADENA, Calif.-Pollution around cities like Los Angeles can be seen from space and is visible evidence of humanity's growing effect on Earth's atmosphere. Using a thousand-cubic-foot indoor smog chamber, John Seinfeld studies atmospheric gases and particles and their interaction with climatic factors such as clouds, rain, and sunlight.

There is only one atmosphere, so what Los Angeles experiences is connected with the rest of the planet. Seinfeld's laboratory experiments use data he's gathered with instruments flown worldwide and are part of an international effort to understand and model the many factors that determine Earth's climate. Seinfeld will talk about the global climate on Wednesday, March 7, in the second program of the winter/spring 2007 Earnest C. Watson Lecture Series.

"There has been a lot in the news lately about climate change," says Seinfeld, the Louis E. Nohl Professor and professor of chemical engineering at the California Institute of Technology. "I will try to clarify what we know about the current state of the climate, and where we are likely heading."

Seinfeld will present his "Global Climate Change" lecture at 8 p.m. in Beckman Auditorium, 332 S. Michigan Avenue, south of Del Mar Boulevard, on the Caltech campus in Pasadena. Seating is available on a free, no-ticket-required, first-come, first-served basis.

Caltech has offered the Watson Lecture Series since 1922, when the late Caltech physicist Earnest Watson conceived it as a way to explain science to the local community.

For more information, call (626) 395-4652. Outside the greater Pasadena area, call toll-free 1(888) 2CALTECH (1-888-222-5832).

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Contact: Kathy Svitil (626) 395-8022 ksvitil@caltech.edu

Visit the Caltech Media Relations website at: http://pr.caltech.edu/media.

Written by John Avery