Henk Postma


I met Henk in 1961 at Scripps, where he was a visiting scientist. Henk and my sedimentology prof. Jerry van Andel were the coauthors of the well-known study on the "Sediments of the Gulf of Paria" [T. van Andel & Postma, H. 1954 Recent sediments of the Gulf of Paria Reports on the Orinoco Shelf Expedition, Vol 1, Verh.Kon.Ned.Akad.Wet., I Reeks, 20(5): 1-245]
which I used a lot when I was in Trinidad and Tobago from 1980-82.

He had also done some excellent work on suspended sediment transport in the Dutch Wadden, which I used in my own Ph.D.(1971) on the same topic in Delaware Bay.

Finally, and most strikingly, he and I had been close neighbors in Den Helder, Holland, from 1950-1952, when I was at the Royal Netherlands Naval Academy. If I had known at that time that there was such an institution as the then rather obscure Marine Zoological Station (established in July 1876), I might very well have gone there for oceanography, rather than in the Navy ...
Already at that time there were plans to expand the scope of the MZS to include all of oceanography and to get a new and modern station on the nearby island of Texel. Henk was to be instrumental in the execution of this project, and became the first director of NIOZ- Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, Texel, The Netherlands
What is so striking about this is how long it took Henk, already an established scientist, in the Netherlands to get this lab going, compared to the time it took me in the USA, when I started in 1966 at Millersville with just an MS degree in Oceanography and hired as a temporary instructor, to set up The Marine Science Consortium and its first marine station on the Delaware coast...

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Recent Sedimentation Patterns in Trinidad and Tobago by Derek Hudson, IMA