George C. Reid (1929–2011)



[1] George Colvin Reid, a pioneering solar and climate scientist, passed away at his home in Boulder, Colo., on 6 May 2011 after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer. George was 81. His legacy includes an impressive and prolific scientific career that spanned nearly 60 years. George was a world leader in atmospheric science with an exceptionally broad understanding of atmospheric phenomena encompassing both dynamics and chemistry. Early in his career, George wrote a number of influential papers with Harold Leinbach, Gordon Little, and Colin Hines on energetic particles in solar flares and the effect of such particles on the Earth's atmosphere. He and Harold Leinbach coined the often quoted phrase “polar cap absorption” and its acronym “PCA,” which have entered the lexicon of atmospheric science to describe the interaction of solar flares on the Earth's atmosphere at high latitudes. As his career progressed, his research interests expanded to include solar energetic particles, solar influences on the upper atmosphere, ion chemistry in the upper atmosphere, noctilucent clouds, the dynamics and chemistry of the middle atmosphere, the mechanisms of global climate change with emphasis on the tropics, and the influence of solar variability on the lower atmosphere and ocean temperatures.