View Gerald KEATING’s Obituary
YORKTOWN Gerald Maurice Keating, 74, of Yorktown, Va., died Saturday, Nov. 27, 2010. Gerald was born in Mineola and raised in Garden City on Long Island in New York.
He is survived by his companion of many years, Nancy McBride Hogg. Gerald is also survived by his cousin, Page Davis Icard of Connecticut; and by former wife, Jean C. Keating of Williamsburg, Va.
Gerald Keating was a world expert on planetary atmospheres. He studied the aeronomy of planetary atmospheres generally at altitudes above 100km where escape of the planetary atmosphere begins to occur. His experiments have been flown to Venus (Pioneer Venus and Magellan), Mars (Mars Global Surveyor, ugg trainers Mars Odyssey, and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter), and Earth (Explorers 9, 19, 24, and 39). Gerald made a number of discoveries (with his colleagues). For Earth, he discovered the Winter Helium Bulge and the Cooling of the Thermosphere due to increases in CO2. At Venus, he discovered a cryosphere in the upper atmosphere and also detected the super rotation of the upper atmosphere. In the upper atmosphere of Mars he discovered a winter polar warming of the thermosphere, determined exospheric temperatures regulating escape of the planetary atmosphere, mapped the thermosphere as a function of local solar time, latitude, season, and solar activity, detected enormous increases in the thermospheric density caused by dust storms and discovered planetary scale waves that cause variation in thermospheric density by a factor of 2. He and his colleagues showed the first compelling evidence of the response of the Earth’s ozone layer to solar variability. Recently he discovered strong greenhouse cooling in the Earth’s thermosphere caused by the ugg trainers global rise of anthropogenic CO2. Gerald was concerned about Earth’s atmosphere and what is happening because of increasing CO2. Some ugg trainers of his last ideas reflected the cooling vs. heating of the atmosphere debate. Both are happening in a simultaneous fashion. The outer atmosphere is cooling and shrinking as a result of CO2 build up. The Ion layer shrinks and drops, gets thicker, deflects CO2 back to the surface which makes the near surface atmosphere get thicker and hotter. The outer atmosphere shrinking was important to Gerald because that’s where satellites fly. The decrease in density in the outer atmosphere affects satellite orbits.
Gerald went to work for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in Hampton, Va., after schooling as a Physicist. Bitten by the ‘space bug’ in the form of Sputnik 1, there was no other ugg trainers place he wanted to work. E. Reid Award; plus a number of other awards for various discoveries.
At NASA Langley, he accumulated more than 30 years experience supervising, planning, designing, and conducting investigations concerning the Earth, Venus and Mars Thermospheres and Exospheres and the Earth’s middle atmosphere. His work resulted in many discoveries. Gerald retired from NASA Langley in 1995. He was a Senior Staff Research Scientist at The George Washington University. After retiring from NASA, Gerald took about four months to decide he really could not play golf and he was bored. Gerald chose The George Washington University to continue his search for discoveries. While at GWU, Gerald was Principal Investigator/Team Leader for the accelerometer experiments on MGS, MO and MRO. He developed the thermospheric model for the Venus International Reference Atmosphere. This VIRA model was used for Magellan aerobraking and for Pioneer Venus Operations. He was responsible for generating The International Reference Atmosphere of the Earth’s Ozone for COSPAR. COSPAR is the International Committee for Space Research established by the International Council of Scientific Unions. He was Chairman of COSPAR’S Sub commission on Planetary Atmospheres and Aeronomy and Chairman of COSPAR’s Task Group on Reference Atmospheres of Trace Species. He headed the Mars International Reference Atmosphere. His bibliography includes more than 150 publications.
Gerald was an adventurer, photographer and dare devil. For many winters, he went skiing down the black diamond slopes of the Matterhorn, in Switzerland. He liked to tell people he “had been to more than 100 countries and two other planets.” For a month, in the 60’s, he explored and traveled down, by canoe type boat, the Orinoco River, in Venezuela, near where it connects to the Amazon River. Around that time frame, he once, in Peru, bribed (with liquor) a crop duster to fly him over Machu Picchu an illegal act at the time so he could look and take pictures. He also, in a similar fashion, got a flight to look at the glyphs in Chile. He took an eye level (in a bit larger airplane) photo of Mount Everest. One stunt, even he admitted was foolhardy, was taking a picture of a tiger in a zoo in India while being on the same side of the fence as the tiger. In India, Gerald photographed the Taj Mahal, went to Tiger Tops and Lake Dahl. He went on safari in Africa. He got to Mount Kilimanjaro and the Pyramids. He photographed, up close, tree lions in Tanzania and leopards and other lions in Kenya. He did not get close to the hippos. When he heard the border crossing had been opened in Berlin and Berliners were partying on the wall; he grabbed a flight and joined the party. Gerald walked on the Great Wall in China. One could go on about his adventures.