Ensure - Joint Centre for Environmental Sustainability and Resiliance University of Exeter China University of Hong Kong

ENSURE PI Receives 2021 John Wahr Early Career Award


Prof. Lin Liu, an Associate Professor in the Earth System Science Programme, Faculty of Science at The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) and one of the PIs of the “Hydrological Significance of Rock Glaciers: Potential Water Resources in a Warming Climate” project supported by ENSURE, was recently awarded the 2021 John Wahr Early Career Award from the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in recognition of his contribution to the significant advances in innovating space geodesy. Professor Liu is the first in Hong Kong to receive this honour.


Applications of Geodesy to Cryospheric Sciences

Geodesy is the science of accurately measuring and understanding the Earth’s geometric shape, orientation in space, and gravitational field, as well as the changes in these properties over time. Professor Liu’s research has made a contribution to the advances of space geodesy by precisely measuring the subtle deformation in frozen ground in the Arctic and Tibetan Plateau, and adopting global satellite navigation systems such as GPS and satellite radar to continuously monitor the permafrost thaw. 

Professor Liu is thankful for the full support from his students and postdoctoral researchers in the team, colleagues in the Earth System Science Programme and the Faculty of Science, and his mentors. “I am truly honoured and humbled to receive the Award. I am also grateful to my PhD advisor the late Professor John Wahr for training me up as a scientist and educator. It has a very special meaning for me to receive this Award named after him,” said Professor Liu.

Professor Liu received his Bachelor of Science in Geophysics from Wuhan University in 2005 and a Doctoral degree in Geophysics from the University of Colorado Boulder in 2011. He was a George Thompson Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Geophysics at Stanford University prior to joining CUHK in 2014. In addition to geodesy, Professor Liu’s research interest lies in the areas of cryosphere geophysics, remote sensing, and deep learning applications.

Professor Liu is a finalist of the 2020 Falling Walls Science Breakthroughs of the Year Award in the finalist in the Physical Sciences category.


About John Wahr Early Career Award

The John Wahr Early Career Award was first presented in 2005 and named after the late Professor John WAHR, a well-known geophysicist. It is awarded annually to early or mid-career scientists of the age of 40 or below who demonstrate significant advances in geodetic science, technology, applications, observations, or theory. This year’s award will be presented at the AGU Fall Meeting scheduled for December 2021.

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