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TEAM MEMBER PROFILE

Dr Douglas Hardy
Senior Research Fellow in the Climate System Research Centre and Department of Geosciences, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Websites
Dr. Hardy’s website
Kilimanjaro Research Page
Kilimanjaro Climate & Glaciers Blog

The Wings of Kilimanjaro are very, very chuffed to have the advisory of Dr. Douglas R Hardy on board the Wings Of Kilimanjaro team.

Douglas has played a key role in mentoring the team about seasonal and interannual climate variability, as well as diurnal weather patterns at the summit, information which has been used to help decide on dates for the Wings of Kilimanjaro event.

In February 2000, Doug lead a team from the University of Massachusetts to the top of Kilimanjaro to install an automatic weather station. The weather station operates using solar power. It measures and records air temperature, humidity, incoming solar radiation, wind speed and directions, barometric pressure and changes in the surface height of the ice cap.
It sends observations several times a day to a UMass computer via satellite transmitter. The weather station is located at 5794 meters above sea level near the summit of Kilimanjaro.
Dr. Hardy’s studies continue to focus on climatic conditions on Kilimanjaro, specifically addressing current environmental changes. Since 2000, Doug and his crew have spent considerable time on Kilimanjaro studying weather patterns, sampling glacier ice cores and changes in ice thickness. Doug himself has spent 69 days and 55 nights on the actual summit itself, something we here at Wings of Kilimanjaro can barely begin to imagine.

Once described by author Ernest Hemingway to be “as wide as all the world,” the ice fields atop Mount Kilimanjaro have now retreated to their smallest known extent .
Hardy and others speculate that, within decades we may reach a point where there may not be any glaciers on the mountain, for the first time in perhaps 12,000 years.

The W.O.K. team cannot express their thanks enough for the invaluable knowledge of Mount Kilimanjaro that he has so graciously shared.

Dr Hardy started high altitude climate studies in 1996 on Volcan Sajama, the highest peak in Bolivia. The station operated there for 4 years, in parallel with one on Nevado Illimani. Since 2003, Doug has been working in Peru on the Quelccaya Ice Cap, where ice cores were drilled in 1983 and again in 2003.