Ocean physics, marine geology, marine biology, marine engineering
Ocean physics, marine geology, marine biology, marine engineering
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A.S.Monin Print E-mail

MONIN Andrei Sergeevich
(02.07.1921 - 22.09.2007)

Doctor of Physical and Mathematical Sciences (1956), Professor (1963),
Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences (2000),
Director of the P.P.Shirshov Institute of Oceanology of the Russian Academy of Sciences (1965-1987),
Head of the Synoptic processes Laboratory of the P.P.Shirshov Institute of Oceanology (1987 - 2007).

A.S.Monin was born in Moscow on July 2, 1921, in the family of S.A.Monin, Assistant Professor of the Moscow Pedagogical Institute. In 1938 he entered the Mechanical and Mathematical Faculty of the M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University from which he graduated in December, 1942, to become a post-graduate student. In 1943, A.S.Monin was called up for military service in the ranks of the Red Army and was directed to the military courses of weather forecasters organized at the Higher Hydrometeorological Institute of the Red Army.

He was given the rank of lieutenant and sent to the 3rd Baltic Front where he was section leader of a frontal meteorological station during the whole military campaign from the liberation of Pskov until the liberation of Riga. He was awarded the medals "For services in battle" and "For defense of Moscow". In May, 1945, A.S.Monin was attached to the Central Institute of Weather Forecasts of the Red Army. In January, 1946, he was demobilized and started his scientific career at the Central Institute of Weather Forecasts.

Further A.S.Monin's scientific specialization was determined by his post-graduate studentship at the Research Institute of Mathematics of the Moscow State University where between 1946 and 1949 under the direct guidance of Academician A.N.Kolmogorov he prepared and defended his Candidate's thesis devoted to the atmospheric turbulence theory. In 1951 A.S.Monin passed to the Geophysical Institute of the USSR Academy of Sciences, to its Atmospheric Physics Department, which later was reorganized to become the Atmospheric Physics Institute. At the latter Institute A.S.Monin was a senior scientist, Head of a department and then a scientific consultant. In 1956 he defended his Doctor's thesis on the turbulent diffusion theory.

A.S.Monin's breadth of scientific interests and encyclopedic knowledge found a useful application when he became Director of the P.P.Shirshov Institute of Oceanology of the USSR Academy of Sciences in 1965. With his appointment as Director the Institute's research in fundamental physical, chemical, geological and biological problems of the ocean became more active. The results of the Institute's work won international recognition, and the Institute itself became the Russian leading and one of the World's leading scientific centres in the World Ocean studies. Due to Director's persistence and firmness of purpose the Institute's research fleet grew essentially at that time: the old "Vityaz" gave way to modern research vessels, such as "Akademik Kurchatov", "Dmitry Mendeleev", "Akademik Mstislav Keldysh", "Professor Shtockman", new "Vityaz", acoustic research vessels "Akademik Sergei Vaviliv" and "Akademik Ioffe". Deep-ocean manned submersibles PISCES and MIR made their appearance at that time.

A.S.Monin tried to go into the heart of all the problems of the Institute's activity - from the building of new premises for the Institute, the construction of new research vessels, underwater laboratories and deep-ocean manned submersibles to the fundamental theoretical studies in ocean physics, organization of numerical experiments in the general atmospheric and oceanic circulation and technique of direct measurements and the development of new instruments and equipment.

A.S.Monin's earliest and the most durable scientific interest was in turbulence mechanics and atmospheric physics. He has obtained a number of outstanding results in turbulence mechanics - derivation of a general equation for the second and the third moments of locally isotropic turbulence, derivation of Lagrangian equations of turbulence dynamics, an equation for finite-dimensional probability distributions of the turbulent velocity field. He coauthored with Academician A.M.Obukhov in the creation of the similarity theory for turbulence in stratified fluids which has become the basis for a great number of works in this field - the theory of turbulence in the atmospheric boundary layer with the laws of resistance, heat and moisture exchange, turbulence spectrum theory, turbulent diffusion theory. He has made fundamental contribution to weather forecasts, theory of climate, numerical modeling of the atmosphere and the ocean.

A voluminous series of A.S.Monin's publications is devoted to ocean hydrodynamics from the most small-scale motions (turbulence, microstructure, surface and internal waves) to the large-scale ones (synoptic eddies, meanders, rings, general circulation of the ocean). He has created the fundamentals of geophysical hydrodynamics as hydrodynamics of stratified fluids on rotating planets by summing up the general hydrodynamic principles of the atmosphere, the ocean and liquid interiors of the planets.

A considerable number of his publications deals with planetology: hydrodynamic problems of planets' evolution and geomagnetic dynamo, gravitational differentiation of the planets' interiors, density convection in the Earth's mantle and displacements of the poles.

He did everything in his power to organize experimental work in the ocean. The experiments he organized included the "POLYGON" project, the "POLYMODE" international project, "MESOPOLYGON and "MAGAPOLYGON" complex expeditions, long-time experiments such as "CHERNOMOR","KROLIK" and "ARGUS", deep-water divings of manned submersibles in the Lake of Baikal, Red Sea, Pacific and Atlantic oceans.

A.S.Monin is author of more than 620 scientific publications, including 24 monographs. Almost all of his books have been translated into foreign languages. By the publication of the ten-volume "Okeanologia" in 1978 he rendered great services to science as an initiator and scientific leader of the work.

A.S. Monin is a foreign member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1973), a foreign member of the National Academy of Sciences of USA (1976), honorary Doctor of the University of Göteborg, Sweden (1986), Academician of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences (1991) and the International Informatization Academy (1992). He is laureate of the State Prize in the field of science (1980). He was awarded the Yu.M.Shokalsky prize (1986) and the A.A.Friedman prize (1993. He was decorated with five orders and many medals.

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