Staff Notes Daily Announcements

Are you getting ready for the solar eclipse? Then download the free GLOBE Observer App, which lets you take measurements of the clouds and the air temperature.  You can be part of a national experiment to find out how cold the moon’s shadow will get during the 21 August solar eclipse by becoming a citizen scientist with GLOBE Observer. The Earth is solar-powered.  What happens when the sun’s light is blocked, even temporarily? During a total solar eclipse, the Moon blocks light from the Sun. Without sunlight, temperatures drop and weather conditions, like cloudiness, may change. The experiment will measure just how an eclipse changes weather as the shadow moves across North America.

For more information, including how to download the GLOBE Observer app, click here

Posted by Jan Heiderer at ext. 2641,

Friday, August 18, 2017 to Monday, August 21, 2017

Each year, UCAR is required to notify all employee participants of the status of the benefit plans. Each of the annual reports has been filed with the Internal Revenue Service as required under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). The Summary Annual Reports are furnished electronically via a website that can be viewed here.

Posted by Irena Haimsky at ext. 8706,

Friday, August 18, 2017 to Monday, September 18, 2017

Details on August 21, 2017, solar eclipse viewing 

For those of you who aren’t traveling to Wyoming, Nebraska, or elsewhere to see the total solar eclipse, there is still an opportunity to view a partial eclipse right here! In Boulder, the moon will cover 94 percent of the Sun, with the peak partial eclipse occurring at 11:46 a.m. on Monday.

To aid in safe viewing, UCAR SciEd has some eclipse glasses at CG1, FL2, and the Mesa Lab. Staff are welcome to pick up a pair of glasses (limit one) this week, while supplies last, so you can watch the eclipse from outside your own building, at home, or wherever you might be on Monday

We encourage CG and FL staff to view the eclipse from sites other than the Mesa Lab.

As many of you may have also heard, we are hosting a public eclipse viewing at the Mesa Lab Tree Plaza from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday. While we have not extensively promoted this event, we have seen strong interest from people across the Front Range. We will be monitoring traffic and parking on the day of the event in case we reach capacity and need to turn away visitors at the bottom of the road as well as to maintain access to the building for staff.

If your main office is at the Mesa Lab, we strongly encourage you to take the shuttle on Monday. Please inform any visitors you are expecting at the Mesa Lab on Monday to expect heavier than normal traffic, limited parking, and the potential that the road will be closed. We also recommend coming earlier in the day since shuttle capacity is limited.

And finally, a reminder to all staff that taking proper eye-safety precautions when viewing the eclipse is critical.

If you have any questions concerning the content of this email, please contact Tim Barnes ( with the UCAR Center for Science Education.

Posted by Eileen Carpenter at ext. 2401,

Thursday, August 17, 2017 to Monday, August 21, 2017

At its May 9–10 meeting in Washington, D.C., the UCAR Board of Trustees appointed five new NCAR Senior Scientists:

  • George Bryan (MMM)
  • Louisa Emmons (ACOM)
  • Andrew Gettleman (CGD)
  • Matthias Steiner (RAL)
  • Michael Wiltberger (HAO)

Senior scientists provide NCAR with long-term scientific leadership. The qualifications for the position are analogous to those for a full professor at a university. The board also appointed Mary Hayden (RAL) and Jadwiga "Yaga" Richter (CGD) to the Scientist III level. Two recently retired senior staff were awarded the title of Senior Scientist Emeritus: Brant Foote (RAL) and Art Richmond (HAO).

Congratulations to all of these scientific leaders for achieving significant professional milestones. Read profiles of the new Senior Scientists and Scientist IIIs in Staff News.

Posted by Zhenya Gallon at ext. 8607,

Thursday, August 17, 2017 to Thursday, August 31, 2017

ACOM Seminar

Title:  Chemical Data Assimilation and Analog-Based Uncertainty Quantification to Improve Short-term Air Quality Predictions Over the U.S.

Speaker:  Lucca Delle Monache

Abstract: One of the key tools used by decision makers across the U.S. to protect the public from adverse health effects caused by poor air quality (AQ) is the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) / National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) operational AQ forecasting system. To enhance this decision-making activity, this project funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), aims to improve the accuracy of NOAA/NCEP short-term predictions of ground-level ozone and particulate matter less than 2.5 µm in diameter (PM2.5) and to provide reliable quantification of their uncertainty, by exploiting NASA Earth Science Data with chemical data assimilation and analog-based approaches. The three main project objectives are:

  • To improve the initialization of the NOAA/NCEP operational AQ system, which is based on the Community Multiscale AQ (CMAQ) model, through chemical data assimilation of satellite retrieval products with the Community Gridpoint Statistical Interpolation (GSI) system. GSI is being used to assimilate retrievals of aerosol optical depth from the NASA Aqua/Terra Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS).
  • To considerably improve the CMAQ deterministic predictions and reliably quantify their uncertainty with analog-based post-processing methods applied to the CMAQ deterministic predictions.
  • To extrapolate deterministic and probabilistic point-based predictions to a two-dimensional grid over the U.S. with a Barnes-type iterative scheme.

Results from the aforementioned objectives will be reported, with a focus on the analog-based techniques, quantifying the developed system performance with a range of metrics for both deterministic and probabilistic predictions of PM2.5 across several hundreds of stations over the U.S.


NCAR Foothills Laboratory
3450 Mitchell Lane, Boulder, CO  80301
FL2 1022 (large seminar room)
Monday, 28 August 2017
3:15 - refreshments
3:30 - seminar

Posted by Bonnie Slagel at ext. 8318,

Wednesday, August 16, 2017 to Monday, August 28, 2017

Outcomes of the Coastal Convective Interactions Experiment and new horizons with the Australian radar network

Abstract: This seminar will present two topics from the Australian observational meteorology research space.

(1) The densely populated coastal regions of eastern Australia contains diverse physical settings that add considerable uncertainty for convection nowcasting, which currently relies primarily upon the analysis of broad-scale meteorology (e.g., synoptic boundaries and air masses). The Coastal Convective Interactions Experiment (CCIE) was coordinated to address these challenges with a focus upon the South East Queensland region of Australia. Major outcomes are presented, including (i) analysis of thunderstorm hotspots drivers using an 18 year radar-derived climatology, and (ii) the critical near surface and boundary layer processes which favour the development of severe convective storms in marginal synoptic environments.

(2) Weather radar is a fundamental remote sensing tool, however, limitations in data access/standards and ongoing changes in technology presents considerable challenges (and opportunities) for the Australia community. Regarding accessibility, a proposed open-access solution for hosting the Australian operational radar archive using modern data standard is presented, drawing upon the success of the NEXRAD dataset. The database architecture, integration with the research community and applications for historical and real-time radar-based services are discussed. Alongside the 2017 arrival of operational dual-pol to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology radar network, the University of Queensland will be coordinating the calibration and verification of radar-based severe hail and wind detection algorithms. This will include both a multi-season field campaign in the South East Queensland region using mobile dual-pol radar, hail disdrometers and mobile wind towers, and a community science initiative to promote hail reporting. Outcomes will be applied to hazard nowcasting and to improving radar-derived hazard climatologies.

Bio: Joshua Soderholm a PhD Graduate from the University of Queensland, Australia and Australian Bureau of Meteorology. His dissertation explored the climatological and meteorological aspects of sea breeze interactions with warm-season thunderstorms in South East Queensland, Australia. As part of the PhD project, Joshua established the UQ-XPOL mobile radar was established and has seen several successful deployments across Australia for both convective and bushfire research. In addition, Joshua has also worked on radar applications for the energy distribution and insurance sectors and is a keen collaborator across operational, industry and amateur meteorology groups.

Posted by Eriin Fundalinski at ext. 8713,

Wednesday, August 16, 2017 to Tuesday, August 22, 2017
Paleoclimate reanalysis workshop Oct. 2-3, Boulder, CO
The Last Millennium Reanalysis team invites your participation in its third workshop, to be held Oct 2-3 at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (Mesa Lab) in Boulder, CO. Paleoclimate data assimilation is emerging as a novel tool to understand low-frequency climate dynamics, blending multi-proxy paleoclimate observations with numerical simulations of Earth’s climate.  Previous workshops have investigated the use of proxy system modeling (2015) and modeling stable water isotopes in the climate system (2016). This workshop will share the project’s latest reconstructions and provide a forum to discuss relevant findings on the climate of the Common Era.  The event will focus on validating the approach against complementary datasets and investigations of low-frequency climate dynamics made possible by this framework. The meeting will be followed by a 1-day hackathon on October 4 to provide graduate students and early-career scientists with hands-on training to use the newly available data and code to perform experiments, manipulate the output, and analyze results..  Limited travel support is available for both events, with priority given to junior participants.  Registration and information are available at  Address questions to Loretta Quinn at UCAR (  Early registration for the meeting and the preferred meeting Hotel, the Best Western Plus Boulder Inn, is encouraged.
We look forward to seeing you in Boulder,
-The LMR team (David Anderson, Julien Emil-Geay, Greg Hakim, and Eric Steig)

Posted by Loretta Quinn at ext. 8670,

Tuesday, August 15, 2017 to Thursday, August 31, 2017

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 Extremes
Editors: Wang,
Publisher: AGU
Location: ML Library
Call Number: QC 981.8.C53 C55 2017

Fundamentals of Deep Learning
Authors: Nikhil Buduma and Nicholas Locascio
Publisher: O'Reilly
Location: FL Library
Call Number: QA 325.5 .A78 B83 2017

Reinforcement Learning
Authors: Richard Sutton and Andrew Barto
Publisher: MIT
Location: ML Library
Call Number: Q325.6 .S88 1998

Atmospheric Radar
Editors: Hocking,
Publisher: Cambridge
Location: FL Library
Call Number: QC973.5 .H63 2016

The Northern Rockies: A Fire Survey
Author: Stephen J. Pyne
Publisher: University of Arizona
Location: FL Library
Call Number: SD421.32 .R62 P96 2016

The Southwest: A Fire Survey
Author: Stephen J. Pyne
Publisher: University of Arizona
Location: FL Library

Posted by NCAR Library at ext. 8505,

Tuesday, August 15, 2017 to Monday, August 21, 2017

Posted by Annette Lampert at ext. 8719,

Monday, August 14, 2017 to Friday, August 25, 2017

Mark your calendars for UCAR's 2017 Free Onsite Seasonal Flu Vaccination Clinics, offered through Passport Health. This event is open to UCAR employees, their spouses/partners and dependent (adult) children 18-26 years of age and retirees. For dependent children under 18 years of age, please consult their healthcare provider(s) for these services.

Seasonal flu vaccinations are free to eligible participants. For questions on whether the vaccine is appropriate for you or a family member, please contact your healthcare provider.   Please note that Flumist is not available for the 2017-2018 flu season.  The traditional trivalent flu vaccine will be available onsite this year.  It offers protection against three flu viruses that are expected to circulate throughout the flu season.

2017 Onsite/Walk-in Flu Vaccination Clinics Schedule (No registration or vouchers required): 

  • NWSC – Main Conference Room             Wednesday, October 11, 11:00 am-12:30 pm
  • FL2-1003                                             Thursday, October 12,  9:00-11:30 am
  • CG1-2503                                            Thursday, October 19,  9:00-11:30 am
  • RAF/RMAA – Conference Room              Thursday, October 26, 10-11:30 am
  • ML – Director’s Conference Room           Thursday, November 2, 9:00-11:30 am

Vouchers: Eligible participants who cannot attend any of the on-site clinics can schedule an appointment for the seasonal flu vaccination at any of the Passport Health Facilities listed below.  UCAR employees visiting the Boulder Passport Health location must show their employee ID/access card.  No voucher is needed for the Boulder Passport Health location. Vouchers are required for all other eligible participants and for everyone visiting any other Passport Health location listed below. Vouchers are ONLY valid at these select Passport Health locations and can be redeemed any time between October 1 - December 31, 2017 (or while supplies last).  For more information or to request a voucher, contact Annette Lampert, x8719.

Please visit this link to view other available Passport Health facilities.

If there is not a scheduled event in your area OR you miss the scheduled Flu Shot Event in your location and there is no local Passport Health location, flu vaccines are available through all UCAR health insurance plans as preventive care and paid at 100%.

This event is offered as a service and participation is voluntary. UCAR does not endorse or recommend any product or service associated with this event.


Posted by Annette Lampert at ext. 8719,

Monday, August 14, 2017 to Friday, August 25, 2017