Staff Notes Daily Announcements

Sim D. Aberson

Dropsondes in Hurricanes (1949 to the present)

The history of the use of dropsondes in hurricanes will be presented with special emphasis on the achievements since the development and implementation of the NCAR GPS dropwindsonde 20 years ago. The GPS dropwindsonde revolutionized the science of hurricanes. Though originally developed as part of a program to improve numerical forecasts, it spurred development of targeting and data assimilation techniques to optimize data gathering. Most importantly, the instrument provided the first detailed look at the kinematics and dynamics of tropical cyclones, especially in the eyewalls and near the most intense systems. Current research using dropwindsonde data in tropical cyclones will be presented, along with hopes for future measurements.

Tuesday, 01 November 2016, 3:30 PM

Refreshments 3:15 PM

NCAR-Foothills Laboratory 3450 Mitchell Lane
Bldg 2 Large Auditorium (Rm1022)

The seminar will be webcast live at

Posted by Meghan Stell at ext. 2043,

Thursday, October 27, 2016 to Tuesday, November 1, 2016

A new question has been posted to the Delphi Question and Answer Service on the topic: How many people are employed in the NCAR Directorate and what do they do?

UCAR’s Delphi Service (log in with your Google password) was created in 1974 to give staff a vehicle to ask management about UCAR policies and practices in a confidential manner. Submit questions to the Delphi Coordinator: Marc Genty, Mesa Lab Room 39D,, ext 1210. Staff can submit questions the following ways: 
    1.    Interoffice mail in a sealed envelope marked "confidential,”
    2.    Email, with “confidential” in the subject line, or
    3.    US mail to the Delphi Coordinator’s home (call the coordinator to get his home address).

All questions must include your name and contact information so the coordinator can correspond confidentially with you. Questions and answers of general interest will be published in Staff Notes Daily.

Posted by Jeff Smith at ext. 2679,

Wednesday, October 26, 2016 to Tuesday, November 1, 2016

TIAA Individual Counseling Sessions for November 2016 have been Scheduled:

Foothills Lab 2 – Room 1002 

Tuesday, November 1, 2016 from 9:00am - 4:00pm

Click here to schedule an appointment with TIAA on November 1, 2016

Center Green 1 – Board Room 3150

Thursday, November 17, 2016 from 9:00am - 4:00pm


Sign Up Today:  

To schedule a counseling session: Follow the link above or 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 as soon as possible so they can fill your time slot.

Posted by Alyssa Fronk at ext. 8710,

Wednesday, October 26, 2016 to Thursday, November 17, 2016

The Advanced Study Program is pleased to announce that its Faculty Fellowship Program (FFP) is now accepting applications for two-month visits that occur between 1 March 2017 and 30 September 2018.

The FFP is designed to foster fruitful and lasting intellectual collaborations between university faculty and the NCAR staff. It provides opportunities and resources for faculty employed at universities and their students to work in residence at NCAR.

Application deadline: 23 December 2016

For more information, contact Paula Fisher at ext. 1328, or see the Web page at

Posted by Paula Fisher at ext. 1328,

Tuesday, October 25, 2016 to Friday, November 11, 2016

CO2 as Seen from Space: Highlights from the OCO-2 Mission and the Development of OCO-3

Annmarie Eldering

Jet Propulsion Laboratory/California Institute of Technology

The OCO-2 mission was launched into space in July 2014, and is returning about 100,000 measurements of carbon dioxide across the globe each day. The mission was designed to measure CO2 with the coverage, precision, and resolution to allow us to determine the fluxes of carbon dioxide across the globe on regional scales. I will report on the challenges of making this remote sensing measurement and present some of the science results on local and global scales. In addition, a spare instrument is being prepared for installation on the International Space Station in 2018 (called OCO-3). I will provide and overview of the science goals for this mission and the current development status.

Friday, October 28, 2016

12:00-1:00 pm

Mesa Lab, Chapman Room

 (Bring your lunch)

Posted by Kathy Peczkowicz at ext. 2431,

Tuesday, October 25, 2016 to Friday, October 28, 2016

Please plan on coming to an NCAR Town Hall to hear about the major outcomes of this summer's NSF site visit team reviews, an update on the NSF budget outlook for NCAR, strategic priorities moving forward, and some research and technical highlights of the past year. Jim Hurrell and Michael Thompson look forward to seeing you at one of the following venues:

Wednesday, November 16, 2016:
Research Aviation Facility: 9:30-10:30am
Foothills Lab Main Auditorium: 1:00pm-2:00pm
Mesa Lab Main Seminar Room: 3:30-4:30pm

Wednesday, November 30, 2016:
NWSC: 1:00pm-2:00pm

Posted by Susan Chavez at ext. 1102,

Tuesday, October 25, 2016 to Friday, October 28, 2016

Super Science Saturday is open to the public and welcomes science explorers of all ages!

Please join us for Super Science Saturday on November 5, 2016 from 10 am - 4 pm. This annual event at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) brings kids and adults together to explore hands-on activities, think about new ideas, and learn about science. This year's theme is Our Changing Climate!

Activities and Events:

  • Hands-on activity tables
  • Science Shows
  • NCAR 3D Visualization Lab Demos
  • NCAR Wizards Showcase
Detailed schedule of events is coming soon.

Posted by Natalie Ponsford at ext. 2585,

Monday, October 24, 2016 to Sunday, November 6, 2016

Which predictability estimates are most realistic?

Kathleen Pegion, George Mason University

 Predictability represents the upper limit of prediction skill if we had an infinite member ensemble and a perfect model. It is an intrinsic limit of the climate system associated with the chaotic nature of the atmosphere. Producing a forecast system that can make predictions very near to this limit is the ultimate goal of forecast system development. Estimates of predictability together with calculations of current prediction skill are often used to define the gaps in our prediction capabilities on subseasonal to seasonal timescales and to inform the scientific issues that must be addressed to build the next forecast system. Quantification of the predictability is also important for providing a scientific basis for relaying to stakeholders what kind of climate information can be provided to inform decision-making and what kind of information is not possible given the intrinsic predictability of the climate system.

  One challenge with predictability estimates is that different prediction systems can give different estimates of the upper limit of skill. How do we know which estimate of predictability is most representative of the true predictability of the climate system?Previous studies have used the spread-error relationship and the autocorrelation to evaluate the fidelity of the signal and noise estimates. Using a multi-model ensemble prediction system, we can quantify whether these metrics accurately indicate an individual model's ability to properly estimate the signal, noise, and predictability. We use this information to identify the best estimates of predictability for 2-meter temperature, precipitation, and sea surface temperature from the North American Multi-model Ensemble and compare with current skill to indicate the regions with potential for improving skill.

Nov. 1, 2016, 11 a.m. - Noon
Mesa Lab, Main Seminar Room

Posted by Gaylynn Potemkin at ext. 1618,

Monday, October 24, 2016 to Wednesday, November 2, 2016
On Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016, a panel of researchers (including two Climate Voices speakers) will discuss the use of proxies in climate research and also provide insightful strategies for communicating science to the general public. Our panel consists of Dr. Jonathan Overpeck, Dr. Julie Cole, and Dr. Kim Cobb; all of whom will share about his or her particular expertise within the field.  We're excited to share this one-of-a-kind webinar with you all and hope to see you there! 
Webinar registration is available via link: Tune in at 1PM MDT.  

Posted by Sara Herrin at ext. 2630,

Monday, October 24, 2016 to Wednesday, November 2, 2016

News clips at a glance: Oct. 14 – 21

Total: ~65 

Summary: NCAR scientist Deb PaiMazumder (MMM) was interviewed by Channel 9 in Denver about a study he led on better prediction of “flash droughts.” Our news release on this research was co-issued by NSF, and covered by a number of broadcast, print, and online media outlets. A new WRF-Hydro visualization did well in social media, helping to promote the story for a second week.

Notable Clips:

Flash Drought Prediction, Deb PaiMazumder (MMM)
Scientists in Colorado Work on Predicting Flash Droughts
(Channel 9 in Denver)

Study Eyes Flash Drought Forecasts
(Summit County Citizen Voice)

Extreme Weather Prediction, NCAR
Why Isn't the U.S. Better at Predicting Extreme Weather
(New York Times Magazine, briefly referred to NCAR)

Fall foliage, Danica Lombardozzi (CGD)
Rocky Mountains in the Fall: See a 360-Degree Video View
(This Lombardozzi-narrated piece produced by Denver7 also ran on a number of other TV station websites including in Arizona, California, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin.)

Tornado research, NCAR's Weather Research and Forecasting model (WRF)
Sand Mountain Magic: Why Does Sand Mountain Have So Many Tornadoes?
(WHNT-TV, Huntsville, Alabama, story about the VORTEX Southeast field campaign) 

Social Media Highlights:

WRF-Hydro (RAL)
A tweet about WRF-Hydro that included a visualization of precipitation surging through U.S. waterways was shared 127 times and reached 20,600 people.

Flash droughts (MMM)
The National Science Foundation tweeted about our new study on the predictability of flash droughts to its 879,000 followers. It was retweeted 20 times. 

Posted by Jeff Smith at ext. 2679,

Monday, October 24, 2016 to Friday, October 28, 2016