Staff Notes Daily Announcements

3 Days until the 2017 NCAR Day of Networking & Discovery

Please be sure to RSVP by End of Business Today for the Lunch - CLICK HERE

Posted by Kara Mayock at ext. 2188,

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Gravity waves in the global 7-km GEOS-5 Nature Run
Dr. Laura Holt
NorthWest Research Associates

Gravity waves are important drivers of atmospheric motion on both local and global-scales, from the upper troposphere to the thermosphere and ionosphere. However, most global climate models are too coarse to resolve the full spectrum of gravity waves and use gravity wave drag parameterizations to approximate the effects of gravity waves on the circulation. These parameterizations are a large source of uncertainty in models, in part because we do not yet have a global understanding of gravity wave properties and their sources from observations to constrain parameterizations. As computational power increases, atmospheric general circulation models are able to resolve smaller and smaller-scale waves, reducing, but not (yet) eliminating, the need for parameterizations. High-resolution models can also provide guidance for gravity wave drag parameterizations where observations are lacking through investigation of the modeled small-scale waves, their sources, and how they interact with the large-scale circulation. This talk will explore some of the aspects of the resolved small-scale waves in the global 7-km horizontal resolution Goddard Earth Observing System model (GEOS-5) Nature Run. In particular, the talk will focus on the wave driving of the quasi-biennial oscillation in the tropics and nonorographic gravity waves and sources related to convection and frontogenesis in the Southern Hemisphere winter.

Monday, May 1, 2017
3:30 p.m.
Refreshments 3:15 p.m.
NCAR Foothills Laboratory, FL2-1022, Large Auditorium

Live webcast:


Posted by Caitlyn Quinn at ext. 1308,

Wednesday, April 26, 2017 to Monday, May 1, 2017

Register now to join a free National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine webinar to explore the themes discussed at the workshop Antarctic Sea Ice Variability in the Southern Ocean-Climate System.

May 4, 2017
2:00 PM EDT - 3:00 PM EDT / noon - 1:00 PM MDT

The workshop focused on the potential mechanisms driving increases in the extent and concentration of the sea ice surrounding Antarctic from the late 1970s until 2015—increases that were not reproduced by climate models, and that came despite the overall warming of the global climate and the region (summarized in the Workshop Proceedings).

The webinar will feature presentations from the chair of the workshop planning committee, Julienne Stroeve of the University of Colorado, Boulder, and from committee members Marika Holland of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, and Marilyn Raphael of the University of California, Los Angeles.

Please register to attend:

Posted by Zhenya Gallon at ext. 8607,

Wednesday, April 26, 2017 to Thursday, May 4, 2017

Air Quality in the Northern Colorado Front Range: FRAPPÉ and DISCOVER-AQ Campaigns

Gabi Pfister

Two large air quality studies involving four aircraft and extensive ground based measurements were conducted in the Northern Colorado Front Range in the summer of 2014: the NCAR/NSF/State of Colorado Front Range Air Pollution and Photochemistry Éxperiment (FRAPPÉ) and the 4th deployment of the NASA DISCOVER-AQ. The immensely rich data set from these campaigns is analyzed to characterize the driver of high ozone pollution in the Front Range. This is a complex task given the large variety of emission sources (urban emissions with the addition of a rapidly expanding oil and natural gas sector, industry and power generation units as well as animal feedlots), the complex topography and the influence of upwind pollution and poses a large challenge to atmospheric models. 

Detailed chemical and meteorological observations during these five weeks were collected from a range of platforms including aircraft, surface sites, mobile vans, lidars, wind profilers, ozone sondes and satellites. All these have different coverage in time and space and measure different sets of parameters. In order to fully exploit the data set, there is a need and an opportunity for statistical techniques to optimally integrate the different data sets and develop ways to efficiently and conclusively compare to model output.

(Bring your lunch)

Posted by Michelle Patton at ext. 1253,

Wednesday, April 26, 2017 to Wednesday, May 31, 2017

2017 NCAR Day of Networking & Discovery - THIS FRIDAY!

April 28th from 8:30am-5:00pm at CG Auditoriums

Please be sure to RSVP for the Lunch - Click Here

UCAR Sponsored Reception begins at 4:00 pm (no need to RSVP)

Posted by Kara Mayock at ext. 2188,

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 to Thursday, April 27, 2017

An important deadline is coming Monday, May 1, for anyone interested in submitting poster abstracts, Visualization Showcase proposals or Birds-of-a-Feather proposals for PEARC 17—the Practice and Experience in Advanced Research Computing conference in New Orleans, July 9-13, 2017.

Submissions should emphasize experiences and lessons derived from operation and use of advanced research computing on campuses or provided for the academic and open science communities. Submissions that align with the conference theme—Sustainability, Success, and Impact—are particularly encouraged. See the Call for Participation for more information.

Students whose posters are accepted are eligible to apply for financial support to cover the costs of airfare, shared lodging, and registration fees.

Posted by B.J. Smith at ext. 1273,

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 to Monday, May 1, 2017

Posted by Annette Lampert at ext. 8719,

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 to Friday, May 5, 2017

Antarctic sea ice should be melting but it's not:
Connections to global temperature trends and
decadal variability in the tropical Pacific

Gerald Meehl, NCAR/CGD

Antarctic sea ice extent has been slowly increasing in the satellite record since it began in 1979.   Since the late 1990s, the increase has accelerated, but the average of all climate models shows a retreat of Antarctic sea ice as could intuitively be expected in a warming climate.  Meanwhile, the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation, an internally-generated mode of climate variability, transitioned from positive to negative about the time Antarctic sea ice retreat accelerated, with an average cooling of tropical Pacific sea surface temperatures, a slowdown of the global warming trend, and a deepening of the Amundsen Sea low near Antarctica that has contributed to regional circulation changes in the Ross Sea region and expansion of sea ice.  Here we show that the negative phase of the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation in global coupled climate models is characterized by anomalies similar to the observed sea level pressure and near-surface 850 hPa wind changes near Antarctica since 2000.  These are conducive to expanding Antarctic sea ice extent, particularly in the Ross Sea region in all seasons, involving a deepening of the Amundsen Sea Low.   These atmospheric circulation changes, and thus the expansion of Antarctic sea ice, are shown mainly to be driven by internally-generated IPO-related precipitation and convective heating anomalies in the equatorial eastern Pacific, with additional contributions from convective heating anomalies in the South Pacific Convergence Zone and tropical Atlantic regions.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017
11:00 AM, refreshments at 10:45
Mesa Lab, Main Seminar Room

Live webcast:
For more information, contact Gaylynn Potemkin,, 303.497.1618

Posted by Gaylynn Potemkin at ext. 1618,

Monday, April 24, 2017 to Wednesday, April 26, 2017

True or False: The AMS Education Program is located in Boston.

True or False: The AMS Education Program is more than a quarter century old.

True or False: AMS Education Programs have directly taught weather, water, ocean, and climate science to >20,000 K-12 teachers.

True or False: The AMS Education Program publishes textbooks.

If you are unsure of the answers to any of these questions, join us to learn the answers and much more as Wendy Abshire, DBAMS member and AMS Education Program Director, discusses the many activities and impacts of the AMS Education Program as well as programmatic goals for the future.

When: Wednesday, April 26th, 2017

6:00 PM – Arrive, socialize, light refreshments served

6:30 PM – Presentation and discussion

7:30 PM – Meeting adjourns

Where: National Center for Atmospheric Research,
Mesa Laboratory (large auditorium)

1850 Table Mesa Drive, Boulder, CO

Posted by Matthew Paulus at ext. 2025,

Monday, April 24, 2017 to Wednesday, April 26, 2017

News clips at a glance: April 15 – 21 

Total: ~ 60

Summary: A potpourri of topics attracted the media's attention, including atmospheric wave patterns, snowpack, weather models, and geoengineering. President Donald Trump signed bipartisan legislation to improve weather forecasting and research, a bill UCAR provided extensive information about to Congress.

Notable clips:

Legislation to Improve Weather Forecasting (UCAR):
Trump Signs Monumental Weather Bill Into Law to Help Forecasting, Researching Capabilities Across Weather Enterprise

Atmospheric Waves and Weather (Haiyan Teng, Grant Branstator, CGD):
California's Recent Weather Extremes: A Planetary-Scale Pattern of Atmospheric Waves May be Responsible for the State's Droughts and Floods
(Physics Today)

Climate Change and Snowmelt (Keith Musselman, RAL):
Scientists Look to Colorado to Improve Snowpack Science in a Warming Climate
(KMGH-TV, Channel 7 Denver, ABC affiliate)

Unifying Weather Forecasts and Climate Models (NCAR):
Take that Europe: Computer Modeler Aims to Give U.S. Lead in Weather Predictions
(Science Magazine, mentions NCAR's MPAS model)

Geoengineering (Kevin Trenberth, CGD):
Everything You Need to Know About Geoengineering
(Popular Science)

Heat's Impact Amid Changing Climate (Caspar Ammann, RAL):
Hundreds of Millions of Poor Menaced by 'Silent Killer': Heat
(Times of Oman/Thomson Reuters Foundation Ammann quoted, story also cites NCAR heat-impact estimates)

Climate and Rising Sea Levels (Claudia Tebaldi, CGD):
Climate Experts Release Latest Science on Sea Level Rise Projections

Design of Mesa Lab (NCAR):
A Portrait of I.M. Pei at (Nearly) 100
(New York magazine)

Social media highlights:

NCAR scientist Kevin Trenberth talked climate change on Facebook Live with Mike Nelson of KMGH-TV, Channel 7, Denver. The 20-minute interview has attracted nearly 14,000 views so far. Paul Douglas featured the Facebook Live interview in his weather blog in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune newspaper. 

Posted by Jeff Smith at ext. 2679,

Monday, April 24, 2017 to Friday, April 28, 2017