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MMAE Seminar - Dr. Rollin Dix - Climate Change in the 21st Century

Event Date 

February 13, 2019 - 3:30pm to 4:30pm


John T. Rettaliata Engineering Center
Room 104
10 West 32nd Street
Chicago, IL 60616


Armour College of Engineering's Mechanical, Materials, and Aerospace Engineering Department will welcome Dr. Rollin Dix, Professor Emeritus, on Wednesday, February 13th, to present his lecture, Climate Change in the 21st Century.


I've become firmly convinced that temperature rise will seriously damage our children and grandchildren's lives. After explaining the science of energy flows from the sun to earth and back out to space, I'll review the rise from the last Ice Age to today's temperatures. This occurred only 11,000 years ago and it permitted civilization to develop!

Unfortunately, the growth of civilization and its increasing use of energy (and the CO2 produced) caused the great acceleration in temperature. How much the temperature rises depends on our action now! Costa Rico generates 95% of its power from solar, geothermal, hydroelectric and wind – we can add nuclear and do it too.

Rather than a slow temperature rise, scientists worry that "tipping points" could accelerate the rate of rise. On the other hand, both the Paris agreement and the technology listed below cause others to have some optimism.

Solar cells and wind turbines efficiencies rapidly improving and cost greatly decreasing, Electric cars replacing cars with IC engines, Coal plants replaced by natural gas, Geoengineering – reflect sunlight, feed sea algae, carbon capture and burying.


Professor Dix received a PhD specializing in heat transfer from Purdue in 1962 and joined the IIT faculty in 1964. During the following 40 years he conducted research, taught mechanical design, especially CAD and CAM courses, and consulted with many engineers and lawyers concerning design, manufacturing and patents.

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