Benson, Oxfordshire

in 1919, Lewis Fry Richardson joined the upper-atmosphere research group of the Meteorological Office at Benson, hoping to develop numerical weather prediction. When the Meteorological Office was incorporated into the Air Ministry in July 1919 (1920?), his pacifist principles led him to resign. He studied turbulence in the atmosphere and developed his 4/3 power law for separation of objects in a turbulent stream. He adapted Swift to:
Big whirls have little whirls to feed on their velocity
And little whirls have lesser whirls
And so on to viscosity.
His book Weather Prediction by Numerical Process appeared in 1922. His only sample calculation, for a particular six hour period in 1910, was a major failure. Nonetheless he included these results--the phenomenon causing the failure was not explained for another 20 years. He estimated it would take 64,000 human calculators to keep ahead of the weather for the whole earth.

To see an Ordnance Survey map click at THIS LINK

Gazetteer Index Main MacTutor index

An extract from The Mathematical Gazetteer of the British Isles created by David Singmaster

The original site is at THIS LINK