Royal Society Publishing

Henry Melson Stommel. 27 September 1920—17 January 1992

Carl Wunsch

Elected For.Mem.R.S. 1983


Henry Melson Stommel, probably the most original and important physical oceanographer of all time, was in large measure the creator of the modern field of dynamical oceanography. He contributed and inspired many of its most important ideas over a 45–year period. Hank, as many called him, was known throughout the world oceanographic community not only as a superb scientist, but as raconteur, explosives amateur, printer, painter, gentleman farmer, fiction writer and host with a puckish sense of humour and booming laugh.