Staff Notes Daily Announcements

Announcement will run from Fri, 08/01/2014 to Monday, August 11, 2014

Using the WRF Model to Investigate Climate Change Influence
on the Track and Intensity of Hurricane Sandy

Gary M. Lackmann
Department of Marine, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences
North Carolina State University
Developmental Testbed Center, August 2014

Hurricane Sandy was associated with historic societal impacts when it made landfall
along the New Jersey shore in late October 2012. The event generated vigorous
discussions as to whether the severity, or perhaps occurrence, of the event was tied to
anthropogenic climate change. Two related questions are (i) whether the frequency of
this type of event is altered by anthropogenic climate change, and (ii) if the synoptic
pattern accompanying Hurricane Sandy had taken place 100 years ago (or 100 years in
the future), how would the track, intensity, and impacts have differed? Here, we
investigate question (ii) using a simplified approach that is designed to quantify the
storm-scale changes attributable to large-scale thermodynamic changes. First, hypotheses
are presented as to how and why we would expect climate change to alter Sandy’s track
and intensity. An ensemble of WRF model simulations, in conjunction with GCM derived
large-scale thermodynamic changes, is used to analyze changes between current, past, and future versions of Sandy.

The impact of climate change on the synoptic steering features suggests offsetting
processes. Warming and increased precipitation/condensational heating would strengthen
the downstream ridge to the north of Sandy, resulting in stronger westward motion.
Diabatic weakening of an upper-level trough to the south of Sandy would have the
opposite effect. Increased upper-level westerly flow would lead to more progressive
synoptic features, suggesting a more eastward track with warming. Numerical
experiments are required to determine which effect, if any, dominates. For this
presentation, I will explore some of the WRF features that enable skillful simulations of
the storm. Results indicate that climate warming to date had limited effect on the
observed Sandy, but that projected future warming would result in a significantly
stronger storm with a more northward landfall location. Research to date has not directly
addressed the question of climate-change influences on Sandy’s genesis or early track

Date:     Monday, August 11, 2014
Time:     3:30pm
Place:    FL 2 Rm 1022

For more information, contact Marybeth Zarlingo at ext. 2751,

Announcement will run from Fri, 08/01/2014 to Saturday, August 2, 2014

Human Subjects Research Training at UCAR: An Overview of the UCAR Process

Date/Time: September 9, 2014 from 10am - 11am
Location: FLA-2111 and via webinar

Required training for researchers and administrators on the purpose, procedures and regulations governing human subjects research will be provided this year on Tuesday, September 9. The training will be conducted by Meg McClellan, UCAR General Counsel and member of UCAR's Human Subjects Committee. This training is open to all staff, with emphasis on researchers and administrators involved in human subjects research.

This one-hour seminar will provide UCAR-specific information for researchers.  In advance of this UCAR-specific training on September 9, it is recommended that you also complete a general human subjects on-line training provided at the National Institute of Health web site:

We request that staff sign up in advance of the training by emailing Cindy Worster ( by August 29; please include in your email whether you will attend in person or remotely.

For more information, contact Cindy Worster at ext. 1101,

Announcement will run from Fri, 08/01/2014 to Friday, August 8, 2014

Just show up to the party on Friday, August 8th around 4:00! The department with highest percentage of attendees at the party will win a happy hour of their very own planned by the EAC. Registration will be available after the race on the tree plaza. Enjoy amazing food and drinks in one of the best locations in Boulder with a chance win a party!

Also, FREE mini bike tune-ups will be available at the party, so bring your bike if you’d like some free maintenance to keep it in good condition.

The race starts at 3 p.m. on the road to the Mesa Lab. It is about a mile race with a significant vertical climb. We will have a running race and bike race this year.  The top three fastest times for men and for women will win race medals and bragging rights. Sign up today at

If racing is not your cup of tea, the EAC is still looking for volunteers to help time the runners and to staff the race. To volunteer, please contact Kristen Alipit at ext. 1661. Volunteer training will be held at 1 p.m. on Aug. 8.  

For more information, contact Kristen Alipit at ext. 1661,

Announcement will run from Thu, 07/31/2014 to Friday, August 8, 2014

Modeling the future of a charismatic bird
Emperor penguins, known from their frequent film and TV appearances, are in danger. By 2100, according to a new study involving NCAR and several collaborating institutions, the numbers of emperor penguins will have fallen by around 19% and will continue to decline, qualifying the species for endangered status. more>

For more information, contact David Hosansky at ext. 8611,

Announcement will run from Thu, 07/31/2014 to Friday, August 8, 2014

The EAC is collecting donations for Crayons to Calculators to provide school supplies to students unable to afford them in the Boulder Valley and St. Vrain school districts.

Crayons to Calculators is currently experiencing a shortage of middle and high school supply donations. To view the supply list, visit

Donation boxes are located at the front desks in FL2, FLA, CG1, and ML. Final donations are needed by Friday, August 8.  If you plan to donate, download the printable supply list at and turn in the bottom of the sheet with your donation to receive a tax-deductible receipt. Please consider donating today.

Thank you for your help with our community!

For more information, contact Kristen Alipit at ext. 1661,

Announcement will run from Thu, 07/31/2014 to Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Cirrus cloud formation and evolution from the microscale to the synoptic scale

Minghui Diao

NCAR Advanced Study Program (ASP)

Earth Observing Laboratory

Cirrus clouds, covering ~30% of the Earth’s surface, play important roles in Earth’s climate, weather and atmospheric chemistry. As a major uncertainty in climate models, the magnitude and sign of cirrus clouds’ radiative forcing (cooling or warming) are influenced by both their microphysical properties (such as ice crystal number density and size distribution) and the larger scale characteristics (such as horizontal and vertical extent). However, it is challenging to understand these multi-scale processes due to the limited spatial and temporal coverage of in-situ observations.

In this work, we link in-situ observations with the meteorological background using reanalysis data. Two formation mechanisms are found for cirrus clouds’ initial conditions - ice supersaturation. These two mechanisms show different dynamical conditions (large scale uplifting versus small scale waves/turbulences), as well as mixing of different air masses (tropospheric mixing versus stratospheric-troposphere mixing). Jet stream and the extratropical tropopause are found to play important roles in setting these dynamical conditions.

Besides the regional analyses, we conduct a hemispheric comparison on cirrus cloud formation and evolution (Diao et al. 2013, 2014). Our work is motivated by the question of “are there any differences in cirrus cloud formation and evolution, given that the Northern Hemisphere has ~10 times higher aerosol loading than the Southern Hemisphere?” Comparisons of relative humidity, ice crystal number density and mean diameter, as well as the relative lifetime of cirrus will be shown.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014, 3:30PM

NCAR - Foothills Laboratory

3450 Mitchell Lane

Bldg 2 Small Seminar Room (Rm1001)


For more information, contact Steve Oncley at ext. 8757,

Announcement will run from Thu, 07/31/2014 to Friday, August 29, 2014

Thanks to everyone who took time to provide feedback during one or more of the Goal Team Open House sessions for the UCAR Strategic Plan. We realize that summer is a busy time so we've made recordings for those who missed one or more of these sessions. I encourage you to listen to the recordings pertaining to the goals that interest you, and to join the conversation, using the online commenting feature for each goal.

Look for the “Add New Comment” field for each page at (use your UCAS password to log in). The Goal Team leaders can also be emailed with your input

I've appreciated the thoughtful, spirited and valuable contributions made by colleagues attending the live sessions, and look forward to continuing the conversation on the website.

Webcast recordings of all eight sessions

Managing operations through best practices (Co-leads: Katy Schmoll and Michael Thompson)
Tuesday, July 15

Advocating for the atmospheric sciences (Co-leads: Joanie Kleypas and Scott Rayder)
Friday, July 18

Fostering an engaged, inclusive workforce (Co-leads: Helen Moshak and Jielun Sun)
Friday, July 18

Building connections and partnerships (Co-leads: Emily CoBabe-Ammann and Liz Ritchie)
Friday, July 18

Inspiring a culture of excellence (Co-leads: David Edwards and Meg Austin)
Friday, July 25

Serving as a locus of capability and innovation (Co-leads: Karyn Sawyer and Mohan Ramamurthy)
Monday, July 28

Supporting NCAR’s mission (Co-leads:Vanda Grubišić and Bill Brune, Penn State)
Tuesday, July 29  

Translating our science into learning (Co-leads: Mary Marlino and John Ristvey)
Wednesday, July 30

Thanks again to everyone for your participation in this important effort.


For more information, contact Tom Bogdan at ext. 1652,

Announcement will run from Wed, 07/30/2014 to Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Please join us as we learn about the summer research performed by EOL's SUPER (Summer Undergraduate Program for Engineering Research) interns.

Julian Quick - Humboldt State University

Live Data Monitoring Via Quality Control Metadata

Brandon Butterfield - Arizona State University

Redesign of Automated Giant Nuclei Impactor

Jose Diaz - University of Puerto Rico

Multilayer Radome Design and Experimental Characterization of Scattering and Propagation Properties for Atmospheric Radar Applications

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

9:00 - 10:30am

FL2 Small Seminar Room (FL2-1001)

For more information, contact Whitney Robinson at ext. 8713,

Announcement will run from Wed, 07/30/2014 to Friday, August 15, 2014

Scientists, tell your story and be a part of the Fall semester Earth Explorers education opportunity. Help local Longmont, CO students to demystify science and technology and think BIG for the future!

Many NCAR scientists have already participated in this exiting project, and we are looking for 5 new candidates for the upcoming Fall 2014 Semester. This program allows you to work with a small group of middle school students with a college and teacher advisor, to tell your story and allow students to explore the science you are discovering through their eyes. Students will work with you to see your lab, get into your science, and make a mini-movie that tells your story for all.

It does not require a large committment on your part at all. Please reply asap to join in on the orientation process that will begin after Friday, Augut 15, 2014, which is the due date to be included in this year's Earth Explorer opportunity. If you have done Earth Explorers in the past, you may repeat if interested! Please spread the word and also get some new colleagues to get involved too. Important dates to check for participation include: 

Introduction to your student group at Trail Ridge Middle School in Longmont, CO: September 24, 2014, 9 am to 1 pm (you can leave early if needed this day)

Interview session at your lab: October 15, 2014, 10 am to 1 pm

Action Filming at your lab: November 4, 2014, 10 am to 1 pm

Film Premier to the public at Trail Ridge Middle School in Lonmont, CO: TBD in December, 2014, possibly December 10, 2014, 5:30 to 8 pm

See the Earth Explorers website

Orientation documents and further infomation will be sent to you upon interest by contacting Marc Mueller in the UCAR Center for Science Education, or SciEd @ X1162, or email

For more information, contact marc Mueller at ext. 1162,

Announcement will run from Tue, 07/29/2014 to Friday, August 8, 2014

A fresh look at internal communication
UCAR’s new internal communications specialist, Rebecca Swisher, wants to streamline and strengthen the mechanisms that communicate news from around the organization and help build a sense of community with colleagues. She's also a specialist in change management and will be sharing her expertise in two upcoming change management workshops open to all staff (July 30 or August 4).  more>

For more information, contact Bob Henson at ext. 8605,

Announcement will run from Tue, 07/29/2014 to Monday, August 4, 2014

These new acquisitions will be displayed at each NCAR Library location for one week, first at FL Library and then at ML Library. If you have questions regarding the items or want to suggest additions to the library collection, please contact the NCAR Library at or ext. 8505

Climate Change and Climate Modeling
Author: J. David Neelin
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Call Number: QC861.3 .N44 2011
Location: ML Library

Physics of Waves
Author: William C. (William Cronk) Elmore
Publisher: Dover Publications
Call Number: QC157 .E44 1985
Location: ML Library

Linkages Between Arctic Warming and Mid-Latitude Weather Patterns: Summary of a Workshop 
Rapporteur: Katie Thomas
Publisher: National Research Council of the National Academies
Call Number: QC903.2.A68 T46 2014
Location: ML Library

A Guide to Empirical Orthogonal Functions for Climate Data Analysis
Authors: A. (Antonio) Navarra, V. (Valeria) Simoncini
Publisher: Springer
Call Number: QC981.45 .N383 2010
Location: ML Library

For more information, contact NCAR Library at ext. 8505,

Announcement will run from Tue, 07/29/2014 to Monday, August 11, 2014

The TIAA-CREF Individual Counseling Sessions for August 2014 have been scheduled. The TIAA-CREF representative will be at:

Mesa Lab, Chapman Room 245. Tuesday, August 5, 2014, 9:00am – 3:00pm

Foothills Lab 2, Room 1002. Wednesday, August 13, 2014, 9:00am - 3:00pm


To schedule a counseling session, please call their Scheduling and Service Group phone reservation center at 1-800-732-8353.

These sessions are in high demand, so if you have to miss your appointment, be sure to contact TIAA-CREF as soon as possible so they can fill your time slot.

For more information, contact Irena Haimsky at ext. 8706,

Announcement will run from Wed, 07/23/2014 to Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Traveling abroad? Need to brush up on a foreign language for international collaboration?

Transparent Language Online is an online language learning application available to the UCAR/NCAR/UCP community through the NCAR Library. This product offers free remote access anytime from anywhere for over 80 languages. It provides personal progress tracking as well as audio pronunciation analysis and cultural resources.

Access is available through the Transparent Language NCAR Library login page. Your initial visit will require a one-time set-up process for your account. Once you have established your account a mobile application is available.

See more at NCAR Library On-Line Resources.

For more information, contact NCAR Reference at ext. 8505,

Announcement will run from Wed, 07/16/2014 to Saturday, August 2, 2014

SATURDAY 2 AUGUST 2014: 8:00 AM  - 12:00 PM


Visit three research aircraft - NSF/NCAR C-130, NASA P-3, and NASA King Air - and ground-based research equipment involved in FRAPPÉ and DISCOVER-AQ, studying summertime air quality along the Colorado Northern Front Range Metropolitan Area (NFRMA). 

These aircraft are flying laboratories fully equipped with scientists, remote sensors, and air sampling instrumentation and will be flying between 1,000 and 28,000 feet from 16 July - 16 August, 2014 along the urban corridor from Denver to Fort Collins.

  • Get on board and explore the research aircraft
  • Learn about instruments used to study air quality including a mobile lab and a tethered balloon
  • Talk with project scientists from NCAR, NASA, CDPHE, NOAA, and other agencies and universities

For safety reasons, please only bring children 6+ years old, and no more than 3 children per adult, and wear close-toed shoes.

Printable PDF:

For more information, contact Alison Rockwell at ext. 8758,

Announcement will run from Thu, 04/03/2014 to Thursday, September 25, 2014

For more information, contact D Nychka at ext. 1711,