Sir Ian Axford is shown at the Max Planck Institute for Aeronomy, in Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany, in the late 1990s. Axford was director of the institute, which carries out studies of the upper atmosphere and outer space, from 1974 to 2001. During that time he took two extended breaks in New Zealand – as vice chancellor of Victoria University from 1982 to 1985, and organising research structures from 1992 to 1995. Axford's own research included work on fluid dynamics, the earth's magnetosphere, cosmic rays and solar winds. He was born in Dannevirke and grew up in Napier, but did most of his scientific work overseas. Axford died in Napier in 2010.
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Photograph by Joy Axford
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