Laudatio for Torben Krarup

Levallois Medal

by Helmut Moritz





A committee consisting of all IAG Past Presidents unanimously recommended to award at this General Assembly the Levallois Medal to Dr.h.c. Torben Krarup. I have the honor to present the laudatio.

This is an easy and pleasant task. Easy because Krarup, since about 1969, is generally recognized as the authority on physical geodesy. The name of "least–squares collocation" is inseparably connected with Torben. I am proud that this idea goes back to the time when I was the chairman of an IAG Study Group on Mathematical Methods in Physical Geodesy of which he was the most active and inspiring member.

His "Letters on Molodensky’s Problem" sent to the members of this Study Group became an influential instrument (the influence reached as far as to the famous Swedish mathematician Lars Hörmander) although he could not be persuaded to publish them. In this he followed Carl Friedrich Gauss ("Pauca sed matura"). He shows that one can influence the history of geodesy even without participating in the current paper industry.

Born March 2, 1919 in Odder (Denmark), he studied first mathematics and physics and then geodesy in Copenhagen, finishing 1952. At the Danish Geodetic Institute he was instrumental in geodetic computations, having actively participated in the construction of the electronic computer GIER built at the Geodetic Institute around 1960. So he was a pioneer also in this field.

Torben Krarup is a wonderful person: kind, gentle, helpful, unselfish and, above all, inpeccably honest. He likes to spread his ideas in discussions with friends and in letters in a generous way.

I do not know a person more worthy of the Levallois Medal. In the name of the international geodetic community, I congratulate you on this honor and thank you, Torben, for your great contributions to geodesy and for your equally great friendship.

I have the great pleasure and honour to hand over now the Levallois Medal and the related certificate to you, Torben Krarup. The certificate reads:

The International Association of Geodesy

awards the Levallois Medal


Torben Krarup

In recognition of distinguished service to the Association and the science of geodesy in general.

XXII IUGG/IAG general Assembly,

Birmingham, UK, July, 1999.

Signed. Klaus-Peter Schwarz, IAG president.