Curriculum Vitæ (short version)

Albert TARANTOLA

Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris
Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI)
4, place Jussieu; 75005 Paris; France

Phone: +33 1 44 27 38 98
Electronic mail: tarantola@ipgp.jussieu.fr


Born: June 15, 1949, Barcelona, Spain.

Nationality: Spanish and Italian

University Degrees:

Honors and Awards:

Prize Antoine d'Abbadie of the French Academy of Sciences .
Award Conrad Schlumberger of the European Association of Exploration Geophysics.
Elected fellow of the American Geophysical Union.
Silver Medal (Médaille d'Argent) of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique.

Responsibilities:

 Jan. 1987 - Dec. 1992:  Chairman, Committee on Mathematical Geophysics, International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics.
 Jan. 1990 - Dec. 1992:  Editor, Journal of Geophysical Research, American Geophysical Union.
 Jun. 1991 - Jun. 1996:  Director of Graduate Studies at the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris (responsable du D.E.A. de Géophysique Interne).
 Jan. 1993 - Dec. 1993:  Member of the Editorial Board, Inverse Problems, Institute of Physics.
 Jan. 1994 - Jun. 1996:  Chairman of the Department of Geophysical Observatories (including Volcanic, Magnetic and Seismic Observatories).
 Jan. 1995 - Jun. 2000:  Member of the Editorial Board, Journal of Volcanology.
 Jun. 2000 - Nov. 2008:  Time has come to be selfish, and take some time for myself.


Research activity:

My work on the fundamentals of Inverse Theory, lead to the publication of two papers in 1982 (J. Geophys. and Rev. Geophys. and Space Phys.) and to the publication of a book in 1987, which are now well known. A new edition of the book has been published in 2005 by the Society of Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).

A citation analysis conducted by the Society of Exploration Geophysicists showed that one of my papers describing a methodology for interpretation of seismic data, published in 1984, was the most cited of all papers published by Geophysics that year.

Theoretical Physics: I have attempted to reformulate physics using the notion of measurable physical quality instead of the common notion of physical quantity. This forces the use of a general notion of declinative to replace the common notion of derivative . The equations of physics so obtained keep the same form whatever choice of physical quantities is made to represent the physical qualities (for instance, the equations of Thermodynamics are the same that we use the temperature, the inverse temperature, the logarithm of the temperature, etc.). Some theories can not be recast into this form, like the theory of finite deformation, or like Fourier's theory of heat conduction. I suggest that these theories are not consistent, and I propose their reformulation. This work has resulted in the publication of a book (Elements for Physics, Springer. 2006).

Also, with Bartolomé Coll, from Observatoire de Paris, we are trying to propose a new paradigm for properly running a GPS system, using fully relativistic concepts.

Inverse Problems: I wrote a book on this topic, that is widely used. This gives me the opportunity of collaboration with many colleagues interested in the different aspects of interpretation of geophysical data. My own interest is in understanding the structure of our Planet, using mainly seismic waves. It is my feeling that seismology will one day provide detailed images of the Earth's crust, incommensurable to the gross pictures we obtain today. This will require new technology for data recording and new methods of data interpretation that will, possibly, take a dozen of years to develop. Only then we will understand how predictable earthquakes are. I have recently made some work in the mathematics of Probability Theory, introducing three definitions and a theorem that complete Kolmogorov's Theory (arXiv:0810.4749). I have presently two projects ongoing: 1) I am writing a book Probability and Measurements, and 2) I am trying, with my colleague Klaus Mosegaard, from the University of Copenhagen, to set the basic definitions and properties of the computational complexity attached to multidimensional sampling problems.

Teaching:

Every year since 1978 I give a course in the University of Paris and one invited course abroad. The last delivered courses were at Stanford University (2004), Beijing University (2005), Bangalore (2006), California Institute of Technology [Caltech] (2007), and Stanford University (2008)). Next courses will be at Princeton University (2009), Universidad de Santiago de Chile (2009) and Shanghai University (2010).
Director of the 50-th session of the Les Houches Summer School on Theoretical Physics (NATO Advanced Study Institute).
Director of graduate studies at the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris (responsable du D.E.A. de Géophysique Interne) (1991-1996).

Publications and Communications:

Three books published, one other book in preparation, editor of one book, chapters in ten books.
Some tens of articles in refereed journals.
Some tens of invited conferences at international scientific meetings.

Employment:

1979-1981: Assistant, Université de Paris 6.
1981-1983: Maitre-Assistant, Université de Paris 6.
1983-1989: Physicien du Globe (deuxième classe), Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris.
1989-1991: Physicien du Globe (première classe), Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris.
1991-present: Physicien du Globe (classe exceptionnelle), Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris.


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Link to my web page: http://www.ipgp.jussieu.fr/~tarantola