Professor Farouk El-Baz
Professor Farouk El-Baz
Center for Remote Sensing, Boston University
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Biography

Farouk El-Baz is director of the Center for Remote Sensing at Boston University and research professor in its Departments of Archaeology, Earth and Environment, and Electrical and Computer Engineering. He taught geology at Asyut University in Egypt (1958–1960) and the University of Heidelberg in Germany (1964–1966). From 1967 to 1972, he joined NASA’s Apollo program as supervisor of Lunar Science Planning and served as secretary of the Lunar Landing Site Selection Committee, chair of the Astronaut Training Group, and principal investigator for Visual Observations and Photography. From 1973 to 1982 he established and directed the Center for Earth and Planetary Studies at the US National Air and Space Museum and was selected by NASA as the principal investigator for Earth observations and photography on the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project of 1975. In 1982 he became vice president  for science and technology of Itek Optical Systems (Lexington, MA) until he joined Boston University in 1986 to apply remote sensing technology to archaeology, geography, and geology. He was science advisor (1978–1981) to the late Anwar Sadat, president of Egypt. He is known for pioneering work in the applications of space images to groundwater exploration in the arid lands of Egypt, Libya, Oman, Darfur, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He served on the board of trustees of the Library of Alexandria, Egypt, and the Geological Society of America Foundation. The latter established the Farouk El-Baz Award for Desert Research and a companion Student Research Award to encourage and reward excellence in arid land studies. He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Nevada Medal of the Desert Research Institute, NASA’s Apollo Achievement Award, Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal, and the Arab Republic of Egypt Order of Merit, First Class. He presently serves on the Advisory Council of Senior Scientists and Technologists of President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi of Egypt.

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