About NCAR & UCAR

About NCAR & UCAR

Fostering deeper understanding of the atmosphere, Earth, and Sun

The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research is a consortium of more than 100 member colleges and universities focused on research and training in the atmospheric and related Earth system sciences. Our members set directions and priorities for the National Center for Atmospheric Research, which UCAR manages with sponsorship by the National Science Foundation. Through our community programs, UCAR provides innovative services in support of the community's education and research goals.

> Print-friendly brochure: About NCAR & UCAR <

The National Center for Atmospheric Research provides research, observing and computing facilities, and a variety of services for the atmospheric and related Earth sciences community.
more below >

The UCAR Community Programs provide innovative services in support of the community's education and research goals.
more below >

transparent gif to create margins for YouTube video
An introduction to NCAR and UCAR. For captions/subitles, click on the red "play" arrow and then roll your cursor over the bottom of the video window to see viewing options. For more NCAR and UCAR videos, visit AtmosNews on YouTube. (©UCAR.)

 

University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

UCAR manages the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) on behalf of the National Science Foundation. With guidance from its more than 100 member colleges and universities, UCAR also provides a wide range of core programs and services supporting and extending the capabilities of the academic research community. These efforts together address the large-scale challenges associated with integrated research, technological development, and educational advancement across the geoscience enterprise. UCAR also plays a central national role in advocating for continued federal investment in the life-saving, economically critical work provided by the geosciences community. Both UCAR and NCAR are headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, with additional operations in Cheyenne, Wyoming, and Washington, D.C.

UCAR's mission is to

  • support, enhance, and extend the capabilities of the university community, nationally and internationally

  • understand the behavior of the atmosphere and related systems and the global environment

  • foster the transfer of knowledge and technology for the betterment of life on Earth

Founded in 1960, UCAR is a nonprofit consortium of North American member universities, each of which grants doctoral degrees in the atmospheric and related sciences, plus an increasing number of international affiliates offering comparable degrees, and North American academic affiliates offering predoctoral degrees. 

Members of the private sector serve on governance boards, collaborate with researchers, contribute funding to specific projects, and participate in technology transfer activities. Through its Government Relations activities, UCAR advocates for strong federal science budgets on behalf of the geosciences community.

You'll find more about UCAR and NCAR in Our History.

UCAR Home | UCAR President's Office

 

National Center for Atmospheric Research

NCAR is a federally funded research and development center sponsored by the National Science Foundation and devoted to service, research and education in the atmospheric and related sciences. Significant additional support is provided by other U.S. government agencies, other national governments, and the private sector.

NCAR supports the community of atmospheric and geoscience researchers with:

  • tools—such as aircraft and radar, to observe the atmosphere, and
  • technology and assistance—to interpret and use these observations, including supercomputer access, computer models, and user support.

Our research projects cover a vast array of topics and are collaborations between NCAR scientists and university researchers:

  • atmospheric chemistry—such as the chemical structure of healthy and polluted air
  • climate—including temperature, rainfall, winds, and extreme events over decades or centuries, from prehistoric times to the present and into the future
  • weather science— including cloud physics, storm structure, and other keys to improved weather forecasting
  • weather hazards to transportation—including detection and warning systems for turbulence, icing, and other flight hazards and for weather-related hazards of road and rail travel
  • weather decision support systems for new and emerging economic sectors—including renewable energy, wildfire prediction, precision agriculture, and other areas of societal importance
  • interactions between the Sun and Earth—including solar and space weather
  • computer science innovation—for understanding and visualizing the whole Earth system
  • the effects of weather and climate on society and national security

NCAR Home | NCAR Director's Office

 

UCAR Community Programs

UCAR's community programs strengthen education, research, and technology in the atmospheric and related sciences through programs and projects which:

  • help organize multiagency experiments
  • support satellite-based Earth and atmospheric monitoring
  • provide real-time weather data for education and research
  • manage postdoctoral fellowship programs for federal agencies
  • link universities and operational forecast offices
  • provide resources for constructing and organizing community digital libraries
  • train working forecasters and university instructors in the latest meteorological research

Until May 2009, UCP was known as the UCAR Office of Programs (UOP)

UCP Home | UCP Director's Office