CSIRO Plant Industry scientist Dr Rana Munns who, together with CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research's Dr John Finnigan, has been elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science.
Australian Academy of Science honours CSIRO scientists
Two of CSIRO’s leading scientists – Dr John Finnigan and Dr Rana Munns – have been elected as Fellows of the Australian Academy of Science.
The Fellowship of the Academy consists of about 400 of Australia's leading experts in the physical and biological sciences and their applications. Each year 16 scientists, judged by their peers to have made an exceptional contribution to knowledge in their field, are elected as Fellows of the Academy.
Director of the CSIRO Centre for Complex Systems Science since 2001, Dr Finnigan has made outstanding contributions to the measurement and modelling of turbulent exchange between the atmosphere and biosphere.
“We are very proud that these outstanding scientists have been honoured by the Australian Academy of Science”
CSIRO Acting Chief Executive, Dr Ron Sandland, said
He is an international authority on atmospheric turbulence over complex and vegetated surfaces and was the first scientist to identify and quantify the nature of turbulent eddy structure in and above vegetation canopies.
He has extended canopy-flow theory from ideal terrain to complex ‘real’ topography using novel theoretical and experimental approaches and, in doing so, has identified several previously unknown physical processes of critical importance for numerical weather prediction, correction of surface exchange measurements on complex topography and the closure of biosphere-atmosphere carbon exchange budgets.
Dr Munns is one of the world’s leading authorities on how crop plants adapt to salinity.
She has characterised the critical plant processes involved in tolerance of salinity, and most importantly has shown what distinguishes salinity stress from drought stress. This insight enabled her to devise a novel and highly sensitive technique for identifying salinity-tolerant plants.
Using this technique she has identified simply-inherited genes that improve the salt tolerance of important crop plants. Wheat breeders are now producing salt-tolerant wheats that incorporate these genes.
CSIRO Acting Chief Executive, Dr Ron Sandland, said: “We are very proud that these outstanding scientists have been honoured by the Australian Academy of Science. Their election as Fellows will add further to the already strong ties between CSIRO and the Academy.”
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