EMS Silver Medal 2015 to Anton Eliassen

Prestigious award for outstanding service to the European and international meteorological community and pioneering efforts to make meteorological data freely available

The European Meteorological Society (EMS) has chosen Anton Eliassen as Laureate of the EMS Silver Medal 2015. He is honoured for his scientific contribution to environmental meteorology, his outstanding service to the European and international meteorological community that was e.g. central for the success of the Convention on Long-Range Trans-boundary Air Pollution, and his major role in increasing and enhancing the public under-standing of meteorological information through his effort to make meteorological data freely available.


The Silver Medal ceremony, which includes a Silver Medal lecture by the Laureate, will be held on Tuesday, 08 September 2015, 14:00 in room Sofia II.

Potographer: Baard Gudim

Anton Eliassen said "I feel most honoured and happy to receive the EMS Silver Medal. It has never occurred to me that I might be awarded such a fine prize".

Anton Eliassen undoubtedly had and has a great influence on shaping the meteorological landscape in Europe over the past decades. He has had a leading role in the governance of most European meteorological organisations and in the international meteorological community. His outstanding leadership and capabilities to integrate has contributed to the development of the European Meteorological Infrastructure within ECMWF, ECOMET and EUMETSAT and WMO.

Anton Eliassen is an outstanding researcher, he has made significant scientific contributions to environmental meteorology through his pioneering work on the modelling of the long range transport of air pollutants since the early the 1970s, resulting in a range of very important findings and providing the technical underpinning of the Convention of Long Range Transboundary Air Pollution and its ensuing Protocols for the reduction of air pollution emissions in Europe.

Being a strong advocate of free data policy, his pioneering efforts to make meteorological data freely available has greatly helped to enhance the public understanding of meteorological information. His view to make data freely available was visionary and ground breaking.


The laudation will be given by Alain Ratier, EUMETSAT Director-General.

Alain Ratier was appointed EUMETSAT's fourth Director-General on 1 August 2011. His tenure so far has seen the launch of the third Meteosat Second Generation (MSG-3) and Metop-B satellites, the start of the development of the Meteosat Third Generation (MTG) system and preparation of the next generation EUMETSAT Polar System Second Generation (EPS-SG) programme. Under his leadership, the role of EUMETSAT in the EU Copernicus programme has been recognised and the organisation prepared for the operation of the Sentinel-3 and Jason-3 ocean satellites. He has also overseen the expansion of EUMETSAT's membership, with Estonia, Lithuania, Iceland and Bulgaria becoming Member States in 2013-2014.

Between 2004 and 2011, Mr Ratier was Deputy Director-General of Météo-France.

Mr Ratier already played a part in shaping EUMETSAT as Director of Programme Development and Deputy Director-General between 1996 and 2004. During this time, he guided the development of the MSG and EUMETSAT Polar System programmes and EUMETSAT’s contribution to Jason-2. He also designed the process for establishing user requirements for future EUMETSAT programmes, starting with MTG.

From 1987 to 1996 Mr Ratier was a Programme Manager and subsequently Associate Director for Earth Observation Programmes at the French Space Agency (CNES). There, he contributed to the expansion of the French Earth observation programme to include atmospheric, oceanographic and climate sciences.

Mr Ratier’s career began at Météo-France in 1983, where he spent five years in research and development activities on modelling of the upper ocean and air-sea interactions and on data assimilation.

Mr Ratier graduated from the École Polytechnique in 1981. He was awarded an engineering diploma from the French National School of Meteorology and also holds a degree in oceanography from Paris VI University. He is a member of the French Marine Academy and the Air and Space Academy.

Mr Ratier is married with three children.