Yeo Receives 2016 Fred L. Scarf Award

Kok Leng Yeo will receive the Fred L. Scarf Award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. This award is given annually to one honoree in recognition of an outstanding dissertation that contributes directly to solar-planetary science.


The variation in the radiative output of the Sun, described in terms of solar irradiance, is critical to climatology, especially as climate models rely on model reconstructions of historical solar irradiance variability. The work of Kok Leng Yeo has led to major advances in our understanding of the physics underlying solar irradiance variability and the model reconstruction of historical solar irradiance variability. He advanced our understanding of the role played by small-scale magnetic features on the solar surface, uncovered why the two main approaches taken in existing models diverge in the ultraviolet, produced what is the most accurate reconstruction of solar irradiance variability over the past few decades, and set the groundwork for more advanced models that will, unlike existing models, not require free parameters.

—Natalie Krivova and Sami Solanki, Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Göttingen, Germany


I would like to thank the award committee and the Space Physics and Aeronomy section of AGU for this honor.

My gratitude goes out to Yvonne Unruh, Natalie Krivova, and Sami Solanki. After finishing my master’s with Yvonne (Imperial College London) back in 2004, I worked in the industry for six years. Without her encouragement, I would not have thought that a career in science was still possible after such a long hiatus. She recommended me to Natalie and Sami at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research. They took me on as a Ph.D. student knowing full well that I have no background in solar physics. As my supervisors, they have supported me in every manner possible, well beyond what I can ask. In spite of my weaknesses and mistakes, they have never wavered in their trust in my ideas and my research. I count it one of the greatest blessings in my life to be able to do something for a living that brings me fulfilment in the company of like-minded individuals. None of this would have been possible without Yvonne, Natalie, or Sami. Thank you for everything.

—Kok Leng Yeo, Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Göttingen, Germany