Richard M. Goody 1921-2023

Richard M. Goody, a pioneer in the field of planetary atmospheres, died on August 3, 2023 in Cockeysville, MD. He was 102 years old.

Richard Goody was born in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England on June 19, 1921. He and his family immigrated to the United States in 1958 and became US citizens in 1965. He is survived by his daughter, Brigid Goody. His wife, Elfriede Goody, and his brother, Jack Goody, preceded him in death.

Dr. Goody attended Cambridge University from which he received a bachelor’s degree in physics in 1942. After military service during World War II, he returned to Cambridge to receive his PhD in 1949. He studied radiative transfer in planetary atmospheres. In 1958, he was appointed as Professor of Dynamic Meteorology and Director of the Blue Hill Observatory at Harvard. He remained at Harvard until his retirement in 1991.

Dr. Goody was a member of the National Academy of Sciences since 1970 and a member of the American Philosophical Society since 1999.

Ted Bowell 1943-2023


Noted astronomer Dr. Edward Leonard George “Ted” Bowell (79) passed away peacefully in Flagstaff on August 21, 2023.

Ted earned a doctorate in astrophysics from the University of Paris in 1973. That same year, Dr. Bill Baum, then serving as Director of the Planetary Research Center at Lowell Observatory, offered him a job that involved the photographic study of planets. Thus began Ted’s career at Lowell, which lasted nearly 38 years until his retirement in 2011. Ted took advantage of this connection to the observatory; when people mispronounced his name, he pointed out, “It’s pronounced Bowell, which rhymes with Lowell.”

While Ted spent much of his early time at Lowell studying planets, he eventually turned his attention to asteroids. Initially using the 13-inch Lawrence Lowell Telescope—the instrument that Clyde Tombaugh used to discover Pluto, and commonly referred to as the Pluto Discovery Telescope—he began searching for these small celestial bodies. From 1979-1988, he led a survey that resulted in the discovery and naming of more than 600 such bodies. Years later, in 1993, he embarked on a new project to search for asteroids and comets that orbit close to Earth (called Near-Earth Objects, or NEOs). Generally referred to as LONEOS, for Lowell Observatory Near-Earth-Object Search, this study lasted until 2008. Under Ted’s direction, LONEOS discovered more than 21,000 asteroids (more than 200 of these are NEOs) and 40 comets.

In the astronomical community, Ted was world-renowned for his leadership in the study of asteroids. From 2000-2003, he served as president of Commission 20 (Positions and Motions of Minor Planets, Comets, and Satellites) of the International Astronomical Union, and from 2003-2006 he was vice president of Division III (Planetary System Sciences) of the International Astronomical Union. He was awarded a Doctor Honoris Causa (honorary doctorate) in 2005 from V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University (Ukraine) and was honored by Polish composer Magdalena Cynk in her musical piece Asteroid 2246 Bowell, for violin, cello, clarinet and trombone.

Ted maintained a lifelong passion for music and served on the Flagstaff Symphony Board, for which he was president for a time. He also enjoyed spending time outdoors, regularly going on hikes of ten miles and more around the San Francisco Peaks. His curiosity to explore often turned a “short Sunday stroll” into an hours-long ramble through the wilderness.

Donations in Ted’s name may be made to Lowell Observatory or the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra.

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.

Abbreviated version from this site:

Robert W. Carlson 1941-2022

Robert “Bob” Carlson died peacefully in his sleep in Reno, Nevada, surrounded by family, after a months-long battle with cancer. Bob was a brilliant scientist, as well as an amazing mentor, friend, husband, father, and grandfather. Those of you who knew him likely recall fond memories of his soft, but detailed approach to any problem – always gracious and insightful. He was born in Waseca, Minnesota, graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1963, and received his PhD in physics from the University of Southern California in 1970. Bob spent most of his career (1978-2016) at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, California. As Principal Investigator of the Galileo Near Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (NIMS), he was also the greatest skeptic of the results. Among many firsts made by Bob and the NIMS team, the discovery of hydrogen peroxide and a radiolytic sulfur cycle on Europa have transformed our understanding of the potential habitability of that world, and have helped set the stage for future exploration. As an AGU Fellow and Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Geophysical Research – Planets, he worked hard to see the best in every manuscript. In the lab, Bob was meticulous and diligent, enjoying every opportunity to solve a new planetary puzzle. He is survived by wife Kathie, sister Jeanne Withroe, his two daughters Jill Carlson and Kristen Conway, and his four beloved grandchildren Noah, Bridget, and Caleb Conway, and Cooper Carlson.

Michael David Hicks (1964 – 2023)

Michael David Hicks of Sunland, CA passed away on July 30, 2023, at 59 years of age.  He worked at JPL as a NASA postdoc and then as research scientist from 1998 until 2022. Born in Dayton, Ohio, Michael earned degrees from Boston University and a PhD in Lunar and Planetary Science at the University of Arizona. His research specialty was the physical properties of comets and asteroids. He served on the science teams of the DART Project, the Near Earth Asteroid Tracking (NEAT) Project, the Dawn Mission, and the NASA Deep Space 1 Mission. He was the author of over 80 peer-reviewed scientific papers.

Michael’s passion for science was coupled with a deep appreciation of art.  He pursued projects in visual media, from woodblock prints to oil painting to metalwork, and he played the ukulele. His performances were a regular occurrence during observing runs at Mount Palomar.  

He is survived by his father Richard, six brothers and sisters, daughter Julia, and ex-wife Brunella Bigi.

A memorial service will be held Saturday September 30, 2023, 11:00am at the Will and Ariel Durant Library Community Room, 7140 W. Sunset Blvd LA, CA 90046. His website requests that donations can be made to