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Oral history interview with Lynn R. Sykes, 1997

Creator: Sykes, L. R.
Project: Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory oral history collection.
(see all project interviews)
Phys. Desc. :Transcript: 420 pages Sound recording: 14 sound cassettes
Location: Columbia Center for Oral History
Full CLIO record >>

Biographical Note


Scope and Contents

Childhood: born Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, son of meteorologist; early education in Fairfax County, Virginia; Massachusetts Institute of Technology: B.S., M.S., geology, geophysics, 1955-1960; U.S. Geological Survey: pressure research, summer, 1956; Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute: geophysical research in Europe, at sea, 1959-1960; Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory [LDEO]: PhD., geophysics 1960-1965, restructuring of LDEO, Columbia administration, member, executive committee of LDEO, 1968, fundraising issues, succession of LDEO directors; seismological research in California, East Africa, Greenland, South Pacific, Fiji, Japan; funding of research projects; development of seismological instrumentation; introduction of computers into recording of seismological data; development of continental drift theory, transform faulting, plate tectonics; Columbia University: assistant professorship, geology, formation of Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences; effort to improve environmental science curriculum, job availability; Columbia acquisition of Biosphere II: opposition to management, curriculum; involvement in nuclear test ban: development of instrumentation and stations, Threshold Test Ban Treaty testimony for Senate, 1972, visits to China, Russia, collaboration with Russia and American intelligence, controversy over use of Soviet weapons; earthquake prediction for Environmental Science Services Administration, 1966-1968; personal development through psychoanalysis; earthquake prediction, 1965-present: collaboration with Russian, Japanese seismologists, prediction in New England, New York, California, Alaska; member, Predictive Evaluation Council, 1979-1982; chairman, National Earthquake Prediction Council, 1984-1988; formation of Southern California Earthquake Center, 1991; Indian Point Nuclear Reactor: testimony to New York State, 1976; reminiscences of colleagues.


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Copyright by the Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York, 1999

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