July 29, 2015 – In recognition of his accomplishments and exceptional scientific contributions, LASP research associate W.K. (Bill) Peterson has been elected as a fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU). Peterson is being recognized by his peers in the scientific community for his outstanding work in Earth and space sciences with an honor that is bestowed upon no more than 0.1% of the AGU membership annually.
Peterson earned his BS in engineering physics and PhD in physics, both from the University of Colorado Boulder before completing his post-doctoral work at the Deutches Electronen Syncrotron in Germany and the Johns Hopkins University.
He served as principal investigator on the NASA Polar/TIMAS instrument and the Combined Release and Radiation Effects Satellite (CRRES), and has been a co-investigator on several mass spectrometer investigations, including the NASA Dynamics Explorer, AMPTE, and FAST satellite programs.
Peterson is currently a co-investigator for the STATIC instrument on the NASA Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission and a science team member on the Canadian Space Agency’s Enhanced Polar Outflow Probe (e-POP) payload. His professional interests are in obtaining and using observations from ground and space-based instruments to characterize planetary plasma environments and comparing these observations to models and theories.
LASP Associate Director for Science, Bruce Jakosky, said, “Congratulations to Bill for receiving the honor of AGU fellow, which is awarded to a small fraction of AGU members each year. With Bill’s work in space physics and, now, planetary science, this is a well-deserved distinction!”
Established in 1962, the AGU Fellows Program recognizes nominated members who have attained distinction in the fields of Earth and space sciences as valued by their peers and vetted by a committee of fellows. Primary criteria for evaluation in scientific eminence are major breakthroughs, discoveries, and paradigm shifts. The AGU Fellows Program identifies authorities who can advise various government agencies and other organizations outside the Earth and space sciences.
The 2015 class of AGU fellows will be recognized during the 2015 AGU Fall Meeting Honors Ceremony on December 16, 2015, in San Francisco.