Nigerian wins highest geophysicists award

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A Nigerian, Dr Maxwell AzukaMeju, has been selected by the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG) headquartered in Tulsa, USA, for the 2019 Reginald Fessenden Award, one of the highest prizes in exploration geophysics.

A notification by the SEG 2018/2019 President, Robert Stewart, said the award was in recognition of the development of the current cross-gradient joint-inversion method, an invention now widely used in academia and various industries.

The method allows, for the first time, the combination of data from multiple unrelated phenomena to arrive at one consistent solution. This reduces uncertainty in decision making with observational data.

The notification reads: “It is my privilege to notify you that by unanimous decision of the SEG Honors SEG Board of Directors, you and Luis Gallardo have been selected to receive the Society’s Reginald Fessenden Award. This honour is in recognition of your development of the current method of cross-gradient joint-inversion.

“The Reginald Fessenden Award is given to a person who has made a specific technical contribution to exploration geophysics, such as an invention or theoretical or conceptual advancement, which in the opinion of the Honours and Awards Committee, and the Board of Directors, merits special recognition.”

The letter noted that Dr Meju’s important contributions to the sciences and the exploration geophysics profession are greatly appreciated.

“On behalf of the society, congratulations on being selected to receive the Reginald Fessenden award. Your important contributions to the sciences and our profession are greatly appreciated.”

The award will be presented to Dr Meju in September at the SEG Annual Conference in San Antonio, Texas, USA.

AzukaMeju hails from Ogwashi-Uku in Aniocha Local Government of Delta State. He attended Government School, Ogwashi-Uku; St Anthony College, Ubulu-Uku and Federal Government College, Warri, from where he moved to the University of Benin for a degree in Geology.

He attended Imperial College, London, where he obtained his Master’s Degree in Geophysics in 1984. He moved to the University of Edinburgh in 1984 for his PhD in Geophysics (geoelectromagnetism specialty). In 1985-1987, he received the Overseas Research Student Award for “outstanding research potential” from the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Principals of United Kingdom (CVCP) London.

He joined the University of Leicester as a full-time lecturer in geophysics in February 1988.

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