Hendrik Tennekes

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Hendrik (Henk) Tennekes (born December 13, 1936, Kampen) was the director of research at the Royal Dutch Meteorological Institute (Koninklijk Nederlands Meteorologisch Instituut, or KNMI), and was a Professor of Aeronautical Engineering at Pennsylvania State University.[1] He is known for his work in the fields of turbulence and multi-modal forecasting. He authored the textbooks The Simple Science of Flight: From Insects to Jumbo Jets[2] and A First Course in Turbulence with John L. Lumley.[3] The book "A First Course in Turbulence", is a classic that logs more than 2,000 citations on Google Scholar.

Tennekes has stressed the limited predictability of complex systems and the limited value of predictions based on scientific modeling.[4]

He was a member of the 'Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences' (Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen, KNAW[5]) from 1982 - 2010.


In an interview in the Dutch paper De Telegraaf, Tennekes says he was ousted from his position at the Royal Dutch Meteorological Institute due to his skepticism over climate change. After publishing a column critical of climate model accuracy, Tennekes says he was told "within two years, you'll be out on the street".[6]

According to Gerbrand Komen, a retired KNMI researcher, Tennekes' view on climate change played a minor role. More important were[7] Tennekes' personality and his solitary views on a range of subjects. As an example Komen recalls how Tennekes objected to the increase of computing power for medium-range weather forecasting, because he considered this unnecessary. According to Komen, Tennekes supported this decision by referring to biblical texts.



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