Staff Notes Daily Announcements

"Adaptive Covariance Inflation in the EnKF by Gaussian Scale Mixtures"

Patrick N. Raanes, Postdoctoral Fellow at Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center

We study inflation: the complementary scaling of the state covariance in the ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF). Firstly, error sources in the EnKF are catalogued and discussed in relation to inflation; nonlinearity is given particular attention. Then, the “finite-size” refinement known as the EnKF-N is shown to be a Gaussian scale mixture, again demonstrating its connection to inflation. Existing methods for adaptive inflation estimation are reviewed, including the one used in DART. One such method is selected to complement the EnKF-N to make a hybrid that is suitable for contexts with model error. Benchmarks are obtained from experiments with the two-scale Lorenz model where only the slow scale is resolved. The proposed hybrid EnKF-N method of adaptive inflation is found to yield systematic accuracy improvements in comparison with the existing methods, albeit to a moderate degree.

Speaker: Patrick N. Raanes, Postdoctoral Fellow at Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center; Co-authors: Marc Bocquet, Alberto Carrassi

Reference: (in review at QJRMS)


Patrick is just finishing a 2-year postdoc at the Nansen center (Bergen, Norway), where he has been working on the theory of the EnKF and related methods. This was also the topic of his PhD, submitted at the math institute in Oxford, where he also completed his masters degree. His bachelors degree is in engineering, from Toulouse. His work has focused on smoothing (for reanalysis and iteration purposes) and square root updating schemes. In his next job, he will look at the control problem under the uncertainty parameterised by ensembles.

Friday, March 23, 2018

12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Mesa Lab, Chapman Room

Bring your lunch!

Posted by Kathryn Peczkowicz at ext. 2431,

Tuesday, March 20, 2018 to Friday, March 23, 2018

2017 Flexible Spending Account Claims Deadline - March 31, 2018

The deadline for submitting any claims for the 2017 Health Care or Dependent Care Flexible Spending accounts is March 31, 2018. All claims must be submitted to Wage Works no later than Saturday, March 31. If 2017 claims are not submitted for the Health Care Flexible Spending by March 31, remaining funds of up to $500 will be carried over into your 2018 Health Care Flexible Spending account. Reimbursement forms for Health Care or Dependent Care Flexible Spending accounts are available on the Wage Works website.

Do not use your Debit Card to pay for 2017 claims. For 2017 claims, submit a claim form that can be accessed from the Wage Works website.  You may fax your claims to (877) 353-9236 or mail them to: Claims Administrator, P.O. Box 14053, Lexington KY 40512. You can also submit claims online or through your phone via the EZ Receipts App.   For more information, contact Alyssa Fronk;

Additional information available at:

Posted by Alyssa Fronk at ext. 8710,

Monday, March 19, 2018 to Friday, March 30, 2018

Title: Factors Influencing Regional Changes in Antarctic Sea Ice

Speaker: Marika Holland, NCAR

Tuesday, March 20, 2018 - 11:00 a.m.
Mesa Lab, Main Seminar Room

Antarctic sea ice cover has undergone a modest increase since 1979, which is generally consistent with natural variability as diagnosed from climate models. However, this hemispheric trend masks large and nearly compensating regional changes in the sea ice. In some regions, these observed trends are inconsistent with climate models simulations for either pre-industrial or 20th century conditions. This emphasizes the need to better understand regional changes in the Antarctic sea ice. In this talk, I will discuss results from several recent studies that provide new insights on factors driving regional sea ice variations. This includes studies that use climate model simulations to assess the role of anthropogenic stratospheric ozone loss in driving late 20th century regional sea ice change. It also includes analysis of observations to better understand mechanisms that affect sea ice change in different regions and over different timescales. 

Posted by Barbara Middlebrook at ext. 1366,

Monday, March 19, 2018 to Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The annual Health & Benefits Fair will be held on Wednesday, March 28 in CG1 from 9 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

This will be the opportunity for you to pick up your blood screen results and speak with a Health Educator about those results.

As a reminder, if you plan to pick up another person's blood screen results on Tuesday, you must bring with you a UCAR Proxy Form signed by that person.  If a Proxy Form is not presented, the results cannot be provided to you.  Instead, the results will be mailed to that person within a day of the Health Fair.  There are no exceptions to this process.

Posted by Laurie Carr at ext. 8702,

Monday, March 19, 2018 to Friday, March 23, 2018

Yesterday, March 15, marked the beginning of a month-long citizen science opportunity called the Cloud Observations Data Challenge, a collaboration between the GLOBE Program and NASA Langley. Anyone can participate and enter up to 10 cloud observations per day from now through April 15, using the GLOBE Program’s data entry options or the GLOBE Observer app. These observations help researchers better understand atmospheric satellite data. More about the data challenge can be found on the GLOBE Program website.

This project is timed to coincide with World Meteorological Day, which is next Friday, March 23. The Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization, Petteri Taalas, will be the featured guest for a Facebook Live event celebrating our weather and climate community and the importance of citizen science observations. You will find this broadcast on the NASA Earth page on Facebook on March 23 starting at 8:30 a.m. MDT.

Posted by Ali Branscombe at ext. 8609,

Friday, March 16, 2018 to Friday, March 23, 2018

A new Delphi question and answer has been posted about: how UCAR staff who have passed away are represented in Staff Notes.

To learn more about Delphi, visit the Delphi website.

Posted by Sharon Clark at ext. 2948,

Friday, March 16, 2018 to Friday, March 23, 2018

Please join us to say farewell and good luck to Paty Romero Lankao. She has built an inspirational social science record in her years here. She began her NCAR career as the Deputy Director of the Institute for the Study of Society and the Environment in 2006. She was one of the original RAL Climate Science and Applications Program (CSAP) staff when the program was created in 2008.  Her studies in urban vulnerability and adaptation are respected worldwide. She received the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize together with Al Gore and hundreds of scientists and scholars authoring different sections of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment Report on climate change impacts and adaptation. We will miss her joy, energy, and insight. Come and celebrate with us on Wednesday, March 21st in the FL2 Cafe Atrium from 4-6 PM.

Posted by Karen Slater at ext. 2750,

Friday, March 16, 2018 to Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Please mark your calendars and plan ahead! The go-live date for our new Kuali Awards Management system is Monday, April 9th. In order to migrate data from the Contracts Management Module (CMM) and Contracts shadow system into Kuali, Contracts and Finance’s access to CMM will be turned off between close of business Friday, March 30th and Sunday, April 8th. As a result of data migration, Contracts will be unable to enter new awards or award changes; and Finance will be unable to add new account keys into IFAS.  

Next Steps

All new awards and awards modifications that are executed between March 30th and April 8th will be held for data input beginning April 9th. Contracts plans to have all data input for awards and award modifications that occured during that time completed by close of business April 11th.

- Before/During Shutdown: Approved account key requests must be received by Finance by close of business, Thursday, March 29th for set-up on March 30th.
Should you have an urgent key setup request during the downtime, please submit that request  with a justification for the urgency to your Project Accountant.

- After Shutdown: Finance will have all new keys held during the shutdown entered into IFAS by close of business Friday, April 13th. 

Contracts, Finance, and F&A IT appreciate your cooperation and patience during this brief shutdown period and we’ll work to ensure there’s minimal impact to normal activities.

Stay tuned to Staff Notes and the Kuali Awards Management Project website for the latest updates! For more information or if you have any questions, please contact Ann Gumbiner (2140) or Jill Lampe (8522).

Posted by Jill Lampe at ext. 8522,

Monday, March 12, 2018 to Sunday, March 25, 2018

Gaylynn will depart NCAR at the end of this month, after an illustrious career of indefinite duration (she's asked me not to cite dates!)

Please join me in wishing her well on Tuesday, March 20, between 4 and 7 pm at the Rayback Collective.

Come and celebrate this fun & witty woman, and cheer her on as she embarks on future escapades.

Rayback Collective, 2775 Valmont Rd, northwest of intersection of Valmont and 28th.

Parking can be tricky! In addition to the small Rayback lot, you can park on Glenwood (one block north), which has free public parking and is just a short walk to Rayback along the bike path.

Contact Christina Book (303-497-1620, cbook) with questions.

Posted by Christina Book at ext. 1620,

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 to Tuesday, March 20, 2018

March 04, 2018 - April 28, 2018

Large Format Fine Art Prints from Paper Collage by Kimberly McClintock

Each of Kimberly McClintock’s prints begins as a tiny 2 to 4 inch square collage, assembled from original children’s book illustrations, postcards, maps, advertisements, found paper artifacts and other documents. Once finished, the collage is scanned at high resolution, color corrected, and archivally printed at twenty to thirty times its original size. A poet for over thirty years, Ms. McClintock considers her visual art a translation into the visual domain, using the same principles of contrast, association, and juxtaposition that are at work in poetry. Kimberly McClintock grew up in southern New Jersey. For the last twenty years, she has made her home in Colorado’s Front Range.

Photography by Vandy Vandervort

“Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations (homage to Gene R.)” is a collection of international travel portraits taken by photographer Vandy Vandervort. Vandy reaches beyond the static in her photographic endeavors, exploring filter apps to enhance her images. Her work is inspired by her travels across all 7 continents. Vandy is a Colorado native and a retired fine arts teacher.

Art Reception: Saturday April 7th from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm in the Mesa Lab cafeteria.

All artists work will be on display in the UCAR Community Art Galleries at the NCAR Mesa Lab.

Preview all artists work on the UCAR Community Art Calendar

Posted by Audrey Lewis at ext. 2570,

Monday, March 5, 2018 to Saturday, April 28, 2018