Department of Atmospheric Sciences | University of Illinois
Atmospheric Sciences | DEPARTMENT



The Fall 2010 "List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by their Students" is out, and the Center for Teaching Excellence recognizes the following professors, lectures, and teaching assistants as being noteworthy:

Outstanding ratings:

Lecturer Eric Snodgrass (in two courses!)

TA Luke Bard

Excellent ratings:

Professors Somnath Baidya Roy, Greg McFarquhar, Steve Nesbitt, Bob Rauber, and Nicole Riemer

TAs Paul Gesicki, Kirstin Gleicher, Bethany Norris, and Joe Wegman

12 January 2010 : PROF. Nicole Riemer awarded funding to study Wintertime air pollution over the Midwest

Prof. Nicole Riemer has been awarded funding from the Lake Michigan Air Directors Consortium (LADCO) as part of a multi-university team studying “Data Analysis and Modeling of the LADCO Winter Nitrate Study”. The project focuses on a detailed picture of the chemistry, aerosol thermodynamics, ammonia availability, and chemical kinetics associated with wintertime ammonium nitrate episodes in the Midwest. The results of this study will advance our understanding of what causes episodes of high particulate matter concentration, which lead to violation of the PM2.5 standards under the Clean Air Act.

16 October 2009 : PROF. don Wuebbles invested as the harry E. Preble Professor of Atmospheric sCiences

Prof. Don Wuebbles was recently invested as the Harry E. Preble Professor of Atmospheric Sciences. Investiture is one of the highest distinctions the university can give to a faculty member, and we are honored to have Don be the first member of our faculty to be given this high honor. A photo gallery of the ceremony, attended by the Interim Provost and Dean, may be found here. Congratulations, Don!

16 October 2009 : Profs. Rauber and Di Girolamo awarded nSF Funding to continue study of trade wind clouds

Profs. Bob Rauber and Larry Di Girolamo funding to study the properties of trade wind cumulus clouds and the mechanisms that lead to their organization and precipitation has been renewed for four more years by NSF. This research continues to analyze the ground, ship, aircraft, and satellite-based data collected during the Rain In Cumulus over Ocean (RICO) filed campaign. RICO took place in the 2004-2005 winter season over the tropical western Atlantic and was led by the University of Illinois. The near-ubiquitous presence of these clouds over tropical oceans requires a thorough understanding of their micophysical, macriphysical, and dynamical properties in order to determine their role in the global water and energy cycles in the Earth's climate system.

16 October 2009: Prof. DI GIROLAMO awarded NASA funding to continue misr research

Prof. Larry Di Girolamo funding for the studies of cloud and aerosol from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) has been renewed for two more years by the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The MISR instrument is on the NASA EOS-Terra satellite platform that was launched on December 18, 1999. Its unique multi-angle design offers new ways to study surface, aerosol and cloud properties from space. Prof. Di Girolamo is a Co-Investigator and Science Team Member of the mission. Over the past ten years, he has developed many of the remote sensing algorithms that are operationally used by NASA for converting MISR data into geophysical properties, and used these data to for scientific discoveries on cloud and aerosol properties and processes.

4 September 2009 : Prof. Nicole Riemer awarded NSF Grant

Prof. Nicole Riemer was funded by the NSF program “Collaboration in Mathematical Geosciences” for the 3-year project: “Coarse-graining and multiscale analysis of stochastic particle-resolved aerosol models”. This NSF program is designed to enable collaborative research at the intersection of mathematical sciences and geosciences, and to encourage cross-disciplinary education. The project is in collaboration with Prof. DeVille from the Department of Mathematics and Prof. West from MechSE. The proposed work is motivated by the large uncertainties that aerosol impacts introduce in climate predictions, and the objective is to develop accurate, tractable, and scalable methods for coarse-graining particle-based models of atmospheric aerosols, which will enable their use on the meso- and macro-scales.

4 September 2009 : Don Wuebbles named chair of the AGU Global Environmental Change Focus Group

Prof. Don Wuebbles was recently named by Dr. Timothy Grove, president of the American Geophysical Union, to the chair the AGU's Global Environmental Change Focus Group. AGU's focus groups are vital to the scientific vigor of the Union and help extend the opportunities for members to be engaged in the various programs and functions of AGU. The scope of Don's focus group, Global Environmental Change, "addresses large-scale chemical, biological, geological, and physical perturbations of the Earth's atmosphere, ocean, land surface, and hydrologic cycle with special attention to time scales of decades to centuries and to human-caused perturbations."

4 September 2009 : Graduate Student Darienne Ciuro awarded cyprus institute fellowship

Graduate Student Darienne Ciuro, a member of Don Wuebble's research group was recently awarded a fellowship from the Cyprus Institute. Congratulations, Darienne!

4 September 2009 : Emeritus Professor John Walsh awarded Usibelli distinguished research award

Emeritus Prof. John Walsh, who is still an active member of the department's research and teaching activities, was recently awarded the 2009 Emil Usibelli Distinguished Research Award from the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. An article annoncing John's award can be found here. Congratulations, John!

4 September 2009 : undergrad researcher Tamika shannon wins award

Undergraduate student Tamika Shannon, from Jackson State University, was awarded the SROP (Summer Research Opportunities Program) Outstanding Oral Presentation Award. Tamika was working with DAS Prof. Nicole Riemer as an SROP participant during the 10-week summer program. The goal of the program is to increase the number of underrepresented students who pursue graduate study and research careers. Her project was “Quantifying Variability in a Stochastic Particle-Resolved Aerosol Model”. The award is based on the overall presentation of the research, including developing a proposal, giving an oral presentation, a poster presentation, and a final paper. A photo of Tamika after winning the award may be found here.

6 May 2009 : Dr. Zhuo wang to join DAS faculty

Dr. Zhou Wang will become the newest DAS faculty member in August. Zhuo is curretly a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Meteorology at the Naval Postgraduate School. Her research interests are primarily in the fields of tropical meteorology and climate dynamics, including tropical cyclones, monsoon and intraseasonal variations. Her recent work focuses on the formation of tropical cyclones within tropical synoptic-scale disturbances. The objective of her latest research is to understand the fundamental dynamics and physics governing tropical cyclogenesis through observational analysis, theoretical and numerical modeling.

6 May 2009 : justin traiteur wins das undergraduate award

Justin Traiteur was awarded the First Ogura Award for Outstanding Senior in Atmospheric Sciences. Justin plans to attend graduate school at the UofI in Atmospheric Sciences this fall. A photo with Justin and Department Head Bob Rauber may be found here. Congratulations, Justin!

6 May 2009 : NINE make List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by their students

Nine DAS Faculty and Graduate Assistants were recognized on the UofI Center for Teaching Excellence's "List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by their Students."  Those cited were Profs. Donna Charlevoix, Greg McFarquhar, Bob Rauber, Nicole Riemer, and John Walsh, Lecturer Eric Snodgrass, and Graduate Assistants Luke Bard, Kirstin Gleicher, and Catrin Mills.  Congratulations for keeping DAS recognized for its teaching excellence!

6 May 2009 : Graduate student nicole schiffer wins doe graduate fellowship

Graduate Student Nicole Schiffer, in Prof. Steve Nesbitt's group, won a prestigous Department of Energy Graduate Fellowship. Her work will involve using the climate extension of the Weather Research and Forecasting model to investigate the role of atmospheric transients in the North American Monsoon region on precipitation under climate change.

6 May 2009 : Graduate student Wendilyn Kaufeld awarded NASA Summer Fellowship

Graduate Student Wendilyn Kaufeld, in Prof. Steve Nesbitt's group, was awarded a Graduate Student Summer Program from the University of Maryland/Baltimore County and NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD. Wendi will be traveling to Greenbelt this summer to work with Dr. Christa Peters-Lidard to gain experience using the Weather Research and Forecasting model's Land Information System, an advanced tool for investigating land surface-atmosphere interactions.

16 March 2009 : Prof. Nicole riemer and Affiliate Prof. Tami Bond awarded nasa grant to study aerosols

Prof. Nicole Riemer and affiliate Prof. Tami Bond funded by NASA for a 4-year project: "Bridging the last few kilometers: Accounting for subgrid mixing and spatial gradients in global aerosol models"

The NASA MAP program will fund research proposed by Prof. Nicole Riemer in Atmospheric Sciences and Prof. Tami Bond in Civil Engineering with collaborators Drs. Suzanna Bauer and Dorothy Koch at NASA-GISS. The project focuses on developing an Emission-to-Global-Grid transfer routine for aerosol microphycis to improve the representation of aerosol particles in global models.

16 March 2009 : Prof. somnath baidya roy featured in las news

Somnath Baidya Roy's research on wind farms was recently featured in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences web site. Check out the details at the following link.

16 March 2009 : Alumnus Yuekui yang wins best paper award at nasa gsfc climate and radiation branch

Former Ph.D. student Yuekui Yang, an alumnus of Prof. Larry DiGirolamo's group, was awarded the Climate and Radiation Branch Best Paper Award. Yuekui is currently a post doc at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The citation given is: "As the lead author of a pioneering Journal of Atmospheric Sciences paper on the retrieval of cloud optical depth from the GLAS solar background signal"

The paper reference is:

Yang, Y., A. Marshak, J. C. Chiu, W. J. Wiscombe, S. P. Palm, A. B. Davis, D. A. Spangenberg, L. Nguyen, J. D. Spinhirne, and P. Minnis, 2008: Retrievals of Thick Cloud Optical Depth from the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) by Calibration of Solar Background Signal. Journal of Atmospheric Sciences. 65, 3513–3527.

A photo of the ceremony may be found here. Post docs to senior scientists compete for this award, and seldom does a post doc win. Way to go Yuekui!

16 March 2009 : Lecturer Eric Snodgrass and ProF. Larry DiGirolamo featured in Technograph

Research by Eric Snodgrass and Larry DiGirolamo on the observation of clouds with the Multi-angle Imaging Spectral Radiometer (MISR) was recently featured in the Spring 2009 issue of Technograph, the UI's award-winning engineering magazine. Check out the article here.

16 March 2009 : Graduate student Wendilyn Kaufeld wins Poster Award at the AMS Atmospheric Chemistry Conference

Graduate Student Wendilyn Kaufeld, a student in Prof. Steve Nesbitt's Research Group, won 3rd place in the best student poster award at the 11th Atmospheric Chemistry Conference at the American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting in Phoenix, AZ. The award consists of a certificate and a cash prize.

16 March 2009 : Plows project continues

Department Head Bob Rauber's group continues to participate in PLOWS, the National Science Foundation-supported Profiling in Winter Storms-2009 project. Bob's group and students in DAS have been "pounding the pavement" trying to get a look into the dynamics and microphysics of banding in winter cyclones in the Midwest. More details on the project may be found at the following link.

2 February 2009 : Prof. Don Wuebbles elected fellow of AGU

Don Wuebbles, the Harry E. Preble Endowed Professor of Atmospheric Sciences, was recently elected to be a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union. This designation is conferred upon not more than 0.1% of all AGU members in any given year. New Fellows are chosen by a Committee of Fellows.

2 February 2009 : Prof. Don Wuebbles Participates in AGU press conference ON REGIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE

Don Wuebbles, the Harry E. Preble Endowed Professor of Atmospheric Sciences, participated in a press conference entitled "Preparing for local and regional climate change" at the recent Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco, CA. The topic of the press conference was as follows: "As the need to prepare for climate change becomes more pressing, scientists are advising local and regional leaders on adapting to a warmer future. Cities and states face an array of challenges, ranging from more frequent heat waves and droughts to higher costs for road maintenance, electricity, emergency services, and reliable water supplies. However, they have not taken a consistent approach to adapting to climate change. While some cities, such as Chicago, are mapping out their climate future, others lag far behind." A photo of Don participating in the event may be found here.

2 February 2009 : Prof. atul jain quoted in chemical & engineering news

Prof. Atul Jain was quoted in a recent article about NASA's soon-to-be launched Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO) in Chemical & Engineering News, a publication of the American Chemical Society. Jain was quoted as saying data from the satellite are "going to be very useful for understanding the carbon cycle. We don't understand where the sources and sinks are." A link to the article may be found here.

2 February 2009 : Post doctoral researcher Victoria Wittig's research featured in Science Daily

Dr. Victoria Wittig, a post doc in Prof. Atul Jain's group, was recently featured on the web site Science Daily for a highlighted journal article on Ozone and its effects on reducing plant growth. “This research quantifies the mean response of trees to ozone pollution measured in terms of total tree biomass, and all component parts such as leaf, root and shoot, lost due to ozone pollution,” said Victoria. “Looking at how ozone pollution affects trees is important because of the indirect impact on carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere which will further enhance global warming, in addition to ozone’s already potent direct impact.” A link to the article may be found here.

14 January 2009 : Research Scientist Glen Romine funded by NSF to participate in VORTEX2

It was recently announced that Research Scientist Glen Romine was funded by National Science Foundation to participate in the upcoming VORTEX2 experiment in 2009 and 2010. Glen will be operating mobile surface instrumentation, including disdrometers. VORTEX2 is a project designed to study the genesis of tornadoes: how, when, and why they form, why some thunderstorms produce them and others do not, the structure of tornadoes, and the relationship of tornadic winds to damage, and how to better forecast tornadoes.

14 January 2009 : Join the DAS Facebook group

If you are a Facebook user and want to keep in touch with alumni, friends, faculty, staff and students of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Illinois, consider joining the group University of Illinois - Department of Atmospheric Sciences on Facebook. See you there!

2 December 2008 : PROF. Don wuebbles named Harry E. Preble Endowed Professor

It is with great pleasure that we announce that Professor Don Wuebbles has been appointed by the Liberal Arts and Sciences College as the Harry E. Preble Endowed Professor of Atmospheric Sciences. Professor Wuebbles is the first professor ever honored with a named professorship in our Department. This prestigious appointment is an exceptional honor that recognizes his career of outstanding achievements and contributions to the University of Illinois.

2 December 2008 : Prof. Steve Nesbitt and Affiliate Prof. Alison Anders funded by NSF to study monsoon orographic precipiation in the Western Ghats, India

It was recently announced that the National Science Foundation will fund a project by Affiliate Prof. Alison Anders (in the Geology Department at Illinois) and Atmospheric Sciences Prof. Steve Nesbitt to study orographic precipitation and landscape evolution in the central Western Ghats Range in India. This project will encompass installing an extensive high resolution rain gauge network in and around the Gangavali and Kalinadi Rivers in Karnataka State, as well as running the Weather Research and Forecasting and a landscape evolution model to understand orographic precipitation mechanisms and their impact on geomorphology in the region.

2 December 2008 : Adjuct Prof. Dave Kristovich named Center head at illinois state water survey

Dr. David Kristovich, Adjunct Associate Professor in DAS, has been appointed as Head of the Center for Atmospheric Sciences at the Illinois State Water Survey. The Center has over 35 scientists, service staff, research programmers, field specialists, and students conducting research on issues ranging from global and regional climate change, air quality, boundary layer and mesoscale meteorology, agricultural meteorology, climate impacts. The Center is home to the Midwestern Regional Climate Center and the State Climatologist. The State Water Survey is a division of the Institute of Natural Resource Sustainability at the University of Illinois.

31 October 2008 : PROF. Don wuebbles elected to UCAR BOARD of Trustees

At the recent University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) annual meeting in Boulder, Colorado, Prof. Don Wuebbles was elected by member university representatives to serve on the UCAR Board of Trustees. Don will serve a 3 year term helping to guide UCAR's functions, including oversight of NCAR.

31 October 2008 : Profs. Bob Rauber and Greg McFarquhar, along with Research Scientist Brian Jewett funded to conduct winter storm field campaign

It was recently announced that the National Science Foundation will support a winter storm field campaign in the Midwest called "ProfiLing Of Winter Storms" or PLOWS. This research will involve several major instrumentation platforms, including the NCAR C-130 aircraft, the University of Alabama Mobile Integrated Profiling System (MIPS), the University of Alabama Mobile Alabama X-Band (MAX) polarimetric radar, and the NCAR Mobile Integrated Sounding System (MISS).

31 October 2008 : Profs. Greg McFarquhar, Steve Nesbitt, and Research Scientist Brian Jewett selected for NASA's Hurricane Science Research Program

Profs. Greg McFarquhar, Steve Nesbitt, and Research Scientist Brian Jewett were recently selected to NASA's Hurricane Science Research Program.  This four year grant will support the high resolution simulation of tropical cyclones at the University of Illinois, as well as an examination of the structure of tropical cyclones using microwave remote sensing in models and observations.

31 October 2008 : chicago climate action plan released, Prof. Don Wuebbles plays major role

The Chicago Climate Action Plan was recently released to the public, including plans for the City of Chicago to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change.  Prof. Don Wuebbles was one of the convening lead authors of the study, along with alumna Katherine Hayhoe and alumnus Dr. Jintai Lin. The web site for the plan is at

9 September 2008 : PROF. Atul Jain Part of $1.9M nsf project to study biofuel development

Prof. Atul Jain, along with Ximing Cai, Gregory McIssac, Madhu Khanna, and Yanfeng Ouyang, were recently awarded a $1.9M grant to study "Interdependence, resilience and sustainability of infrastructures for biofuel development."

9 September 2008 : PROF. Don Wuebbles co-editor of climate change volume

Prof. Don Wuebbles recently co-edited a special issue of the journal Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change entitled "Assessment of Climate Change, Impacts, and Solutions in the Northeast United States." The issue featured articles on gauging the impact of climate change on the northeast in the present climate to mitigation strategies for anticipated future anthropogenic warming.

9 September 2008 : PROF. Steve Nesbitt completes PRECIPITATION field project in India

Prof. Steve Nesbitt recently participated in a field project with Geology Profs. Alison Anders and Jonathan Tomkin. The goal of the project is to determine the spatial distribution of orographic precipitation in the South Asian Monsoon near Goa, India. Ten tipping bucket recording rain gauges were deployed along 2 orthogonal transects covering a major river valley cutting through the Western Ghats mountains. Over the 2 weeks of the gauge installation part of the project, Prof. Nesbitt also collected raindrop samples with a simple filter paper technique to develop Z-R relationships for spaceborne radar rainfall estimation. The ultimate goal of the project is to understand the mechanisms for the generation of extreme precipitation variations in the South Asian Monsoon.

13 July 2008 : PROF. Don Wuebbles to participate in planning for 5th IPCC climate assessment

It was recently announced that Prof. Don Wuebbles will participate in a "Joint IPCC-WCRP-IGBP Workshop:
New Science Directions and Activities Relevant to the IPCC AR5” hosted by the International Pacific Research Center at the University of Hawaii from March 3-6, 2009. This effort will lay the ground work for the science to appear in the next major climate change assessment.

20 June 2008 : PROF. Nicole Riemer awarded NSF grant to study aerosol aging

Prof. Riemer was recently awarded an NSF grant over $492,000 to develop a new approach for modeling the aging process of aerosol particles in the atmosphere. This new approach, a particle resolved model (PartMC), will explicitly resolve and track the size and composition of individual particles as they undergo transformations by coagulation and condensation. The proposed research is motivated by the fact that individual aerosol particles have been found to be a complex mixture of a wide variety of species, such as soluble inorganic salts and acids, insoluble crustal materials (dust), trace metals, and carbonaceous materials. Freshly emitted particles, or particles just after formation via homogeneous nucleation, are initially externally mixed, but can be transferred into an internal mixture by coagulation, condensation or photochemical processes, collectively known as aging. The understanding of this aging process is of crucial importance to assess the chemical reactivity, cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) activity, radiative properties and health impacts of aerosol particles.

20 June 2008 : PROF. Michael Schlesinger awarDED NSF grant to study climate sensitivity

Prof. Michael Schlesinger was recently awarded an NSF grant to study climate sensitivity.  The importance of human-induced climate change depends critically on the equilibrium climate sensitivity, defined as the mean temperature change resulting from a doubling of carbon dioxide concentration.  Prof. Schlesinger's work has shown that there is a likelihood that the equilibrium climate sensitivity obtained from the instrumental temperature record lies outside, and on the warmer side, of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's predictions of climate sensitivity.  In his work, Prof. Schlesinger will use climate models and observations to examine the uncertainties on climate sensitivity due to factors such as aerosols, oceanic heat content, and climatic noise.

4 June 2008 : dAS ALUMNA Susan Avery featured in boston globe article

DAS alumna Dr. Susan Avery, now the head of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, was recently featured in a Boston Globe article.  Read more about her here.


Prof. Atul Jain has been awarded a Faculty Fellowship by the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA).  The fellowships are a joint effort between the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and NCSA. Through this program, faculty can access and benefit from NCSA's high-performance computing and storage environment, cutting-edge visualization and data analysis capabilities, and opportunities for multidisciplinary collaboration.  Prof. Jain's research will involve using cutting-edge earth system models on NCSA's computing resources.

4 June 2008 : Graduate Student Rahul Barman wins DOE Fellowship

Graduate student Rahul Barman (a student of Prof. Atul Jain) was awarded a Department of Energy Fellowship to perform studies at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. Rahul will be working on implementation of a land surface model for use in climate simulations.

2 June 2008 : PROF. Nicole Riemer's research cited in german newspaper sueddeutsche

Prof. Nicole Riemer's recent J. Geophysical Reseach paper on dust transport over the Atlantic was recently cited in an article about a recent aerosol outbreak in Germany.  The original article is here, with a web translation here.

27 May 2008 : First atmospheric sciences undergraduate majors graduate

Alyssa Halm and Madeline Parro became our first Atmospheric Sciences undergraduates during recent spring 2008 commencement excercises.  We wish them congratulations and best wishes for their future careers!  A photo of Alyssa and Madeline along with Professors Rauber and Wuebbles may be found here.

27 May 2008 : Graduate student Eric Meyers awarded NASA Fellowship

Graduate student Eric Meyers was recently awarded a prestigous NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship. Under the advisement of Prof. Greg McFarquhar, Eric will continue his research using high resolution mesoscale models to simulate hurricanes.

27 May 2008 : Post-Doc sagnik dey awarded young scientist medal

Post-doctoral research associate Sagnik Dey (in Prof. Di Girolamo's group) was awarded the "Medal for Young Scientist" by the Indian National Science Academy in 2008.  The medal carries a bronze metal and a cash prize.  The award will be presented at the Anniversary General Meeting of INSA in January 2009.


Prof. Greg McFarquhar wad recently cited in the New York Times regarding his participation in the Department of Energy Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC), which is part of a larger program involving NASA, NOAA, university, and international participation. A link to the article (login required) may be found here.

24 Apr 2008 : PROF. STEVE Nesbitt awarded NASA New Investigator Award

Assistant Professor Steve Nesbitt was awarded a New Investigator in Earth Science grant to use NASA satellite measurements to map and quantify the the uncertainties in the estimation of orographic precipitation across the globe, and to use satellite estimates and reanalysis data to investigate our current theories governing the global distribution of orographic precipitation as a function of dynamical flow regime. As part of the project, he will also be participating in an education outreach field campaign in partnership with Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. The program will take place in the Jemez Mountains in Northern New Mexico, and will involve deployment of a high-resolution rain gauge network to validate satellite precipitation measurements during the monsoon wet season.

28 Mar 2008 : NINE das faculty and teaching assistants ranked as excellent by their students

DAS Professors Donna Charlevoix, Atul Jain, Greg McFarquhar, Steve Nesbitt, Eric Snodgrass, and Bob Rauber as well as Teaching Assistants Andy Vanloocke, Amanda Wisdom, and Tom Workoff were cited by the University of Illinois Center for Teaching Excellence as being rated excellent by their students.  The full list of instructors campus wide may be found here.

26 Mar 2008 : lecturer eric snodgrass wins campus-wide teaching award

Lecturer Eric Snodgrass was voted Outstanding Professor of Freshmen by students in the Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society at the University of Illinois. With this honor comes a cash award and a commemorative plaque.

26 Mar 2008 : research scientist brian jewett awarded chancellor's academic professional excellence award

Research Scientist Brian Jewett was recently awarded the 2008 Chancellor’s Academic Professional Excellence (CAPE) Award for his outstanding contributions to the Education, Research and Service missions to the University of Illinois. This is the highest award the university offers to its academic professional staff.

26 Mar 2008 : Prof. atul jain awarded nasa award to study consequences of land cover and land use change

Prof. Atul Jain awarded NASA funding to study biogeochemical consequences of land cover and land use changes (LCLUC) in the Monsoon Asia region (South, Southeast, and East Asia, SSEA). This research will focus on the spatial and temporal dynamics of LCLUC in SSEA and its impact on the net CO2 exchange between terrestrial ecosystems and atmosphere, and biogenic emissions of non-CO2 greenhouse gases (GHGs) and other tracers, including black and organic carbon aerosols. The grant award was in the amount of $907,371 for three years.


Prof. Greg McFarquhar and colleagues will be heading to Alaska this spring to participate in a field campaign aimed at understanding the properties of mixed-phase clouds at high latitudes. An intensive cloud and aerosol observing system will obtain airborne measurements during the Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC) at the Department of Energy North Slope of Alaska locale in April 2008. Taking place during the International Polar Year, many ancillary observing systems will be collecting data to allow synergistic interpretation of ISDAC data.


Prof. Schlesinger continued his debate with anthropogenic climate change skeptics on the topic of global warming. Debate surrounds the effort by climate change skeptics to attribute this winter's observed global "cold snap" as evidence that anthropogenically-forced climate change is not significant. Schlesinger maintained that this effort was, at best, a waste of time.

See the article here by New York Times science writer Andrew Revkin (login required).

5 Mar 2008 : DAS hits big easy for ams annual meeting

DAS was a major presence at the American Meteorological Society's Annual Meeting in New Orleans this January. We had a DAS booth at the Student Conference, and we also held our first alumni reception during the meeting, which was a great success.

Seventeen members of our department were at the meeting, including ten graduate students. See photos of our student attendees in New Orleans here. Graduate Students Wendi Kaufeld and Nicole Schiffer were awarded AMS Travel Fellowships to attend the meeting. Faculty also chaired four sessions during the meeting. DAS looks forward to seeing you at next year's meeting in Phoenix!

27 Nov 2007: Adjunct Professor Dave Kristovich awarded NSF grant to study urban effects on boundary layers

Dr. David Kristovich, Adjunct Associate Professor in DAS and Senior Scientist at the Illinois State Water Survey, received a grant from the National Science Foundation to study urban effects on lake breezes and interactions between convective storms and marine boundary layers over the Great Lakes.

26 Oct 2007: Don Wuebbles elected fellow of aaas

Professor Don Wuebbles has been elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Congratulations to Don for his outstanding achievements that have been recognized by the AAAS.

25 Oct 2007: DAS alumna Prof. Susan Avery to head Woods Hole Oceanograpic Institute

DAS alumna Prof. Susan Avery will become the director of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in Falmouth, Mass. Avery received her Ph.D. in Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Illinois in 1978. Avery has been a member of the faculty of the University of Colorado at Boulder since 1982, most recently holding the academic rank of professor of electrical and computer engineering. Her research interests include studies of atmospheric circulation and precipitation, climate variability and water resources, and the development of new radar techniques and instruments for remote sensing. She also has a keen interest in scientific literacy and the role of science in public policy. She is the author or co-author of more than 80 peer-reviewed articles.

25 Oct 2007: DAS ranked seventh in the nation in faculty productivity by the chronicle of higher education

A recent survey by the Chronicle of Higher Education ranked faculty at the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Illinois seventh out of all atmospheric sciences programs in the nation using many metrics of faculty productivity. This is an accomplishment not only of the faculty, but also the staff and students who are integral parts of of the research we do. More details on the results may be found here. Congratulations!

25 Oct 2007: bob rauber and don wuebbles awarded ucar service award

Professors Bob Rauber and Don Wuebbles were recently awarded the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) Annual Science Advocate Award. Their awards were in recognition for exemplary service in helping our field gain recognition in Congress. As part of the award, Bob and Don were awarded 'Hollywood Stars', and pictures of their reception of the awards can be found here and here.

15 Oct 2007: DAS faculty and researchers share in nobel peace prize

We are proud to announce that four University of Illinois Department of Atmospheric Sciences (DAS) Faculty, Professors Atul Jain, Michael Schlesinger, John Walsh, and Don Wuebbles, and four Department Research Scientists, Natalia Andronova, Katharine Hayhoe, Ken Patten, and William Chapman, served as authors, reviewers, or contributors of reports by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). All DAS faculty played leadership roles in the preparation of the IPCC reports, and with the DAS research scientists share in Nobel Peace Prize with their IPCC colleagues around the world.

The Nobel committee cited the IPCC's two decades of scientific reports, saying they have "created an ever-broader informed consensus about the connection between human activities and global warming." The IPCC, a group representing over 180 governments, operates under the auspices of the U.N. Environment Programme and the World Meteorological Organization. It commissions assessments of global climate change by hundreds of scientists who are experts in the field.

31 Aug 2007: nicole riemer to join das faculty

We are pleased to announce that Prof. Nicole Riemer will be joining the faculty in January 2008. Welcome Nicole!

31 Aug 2007: atmospheric sciences to have booth at national weather service-lincoln open house

The Department will participate in the National Weather Service-Lincoln Open House on Saturday, September 29 from 9 am to 4 pm. More details may be found here.

31 Aug 2007: Research Associate Bill Chapman's arctic research cited in New York Times

Bill Chapman was interviewed in an August 10, 2007 article commenting on the remarkable retreat of the Arctic Ocean ice sheet this summer.

22 Aug 2007: ATMOSPHERIC sciences undergraduate major approved by the illinois board of higher education

Thanks to final approval by the Illinois Board of Higher Education, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign students may now offically major in atmospheric sciences. The full course schedule is expected to be offered commencing in Fall semester 2008.

7 Jul 2007: ATUL JAIN part of a team of researchers funded by doe to study biofuel impacts on land use and carbon mitigation

Prof. Atul Jain, as part of a team of researchers across departments at the University of Illinois, was awarded $535,000 to study the impacts of biofuel production on land use and the carbon cycle.


7 Jul 2007: DONNA charlevoix awarded funding from the provost's initiative on teaching advancement

Prof. Donna Charlevoix, Director of Introductory Courses in Atmospheric Sciences, was awarded $10,000 from the Provost's office to develop online curricula for blended learning in severe weather courses.

7 Jul 2007: DON WUEBBLES aND colleagues awarded nsf funding to evaluate model based uncertainties in climate change projections at regional to local scales

Prof. Don Wuebbles and colleagues at several institutions were awarded NSF funding to attack an outstanding issue in the field of climate change research: how to obtain statistically robust projections of future climate change at regional to local scales. The grant award was in the amount of $1.1 million for three years.

7 Jul 2007: graduate student xiaojUAN yang awarded fellowship by doe

Graduate Student Xiaojuan Yang, advised by Atul Jain, was awarded a Department of Energy graduate fellowship to work with scientists at Argonne National Laboratory in the summer of 2007, and also received full financial support to attend the NCAR 2007 ASP Summer Colloquium on Regional Biochemistry.

24 May 2007: board of trustees approves new undergraduate major in atmospheric sciences

In its May meeting, the U of I Board of Trustees approved the proposal for a new Undergraduate Major in Atmospheric Sciences. Final approval by the Illinois Board of Higher Education is slated at their August meeting in Springfield.


Students pursuing an undergraduate degree in Atmospheric Sciences have had to use the college Independent Plan of Study (IPS) until now. With the coming of the new undergraduate major, future students will all graduate directly with Atmospheric Sciences degrees. Hilary Minor, featured above, is the last student to graduate through IPS. Congratulations, Hilary!

24 May 2007: PROf. somnath baidya roy's research featured in university of illinois 2006-07 annual report and science daily

Prof. Somnath Baidya Roy's research concerning the effects of deforestation on weather in Brazil's Amazonia was featured by the University of Illinois in its annual report in 2006-07. It also appears on the web site Science Daily.

24 May 2007: Prof. steve nesbitt awarded nasa funding to study snowfall microphysics

Prof. Steve Nesbitt was awarded a grant from NASA to study aircraft, passive microwave, and radar observations of winter storms taken during the January 2007 Calipso CloudSat Validation Project (C3VP) project which occured in January near Barrie, Ontario.

27 April 2007: Prof. Mankin Mak announces retirement

Prof. Mankin Mak will retire this May from DAS after 37 years of teaching, research, and service at the University of Illinois. He will become an Emeritus Professor and will remain active as an author and researcher.

2 May 2007: prof. and hurricane expert kerry emanuel to deliver distinguished ogura lecture

Prof. Kerry Emanuel from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology will be giving the Distinguished Ogura Lecture at 3:00 pm on Wednesday, May 2 in the NCSA Building Main Auditorium. His lecture will be entitled, "Divine Wind: The History and Science of Hurricanes." All are invited.

27 April 2007: prof. steve nesbitt awarded funding to study precipitation in the north american monsoon

Prof. Steve Nesbitt was awarded $285,000 by NOAA's Climate Prediction Program for the Americas to study the measurement and predictability of precipitation in the southwest US and northwest Mexico using satellite and ground-based observations as well as operational numerical weather prediction models.

27 April 2007: DAS faculty and graduate teaching assistants cited as excellent teachers in fall 2006

DAS Teachers Donna Charlevoix, Eric Snodgrass, and Bob Rauber and Graduate Students Justin Hampton, Wendi Kaufeld, and Mike Wilson were cited on Incomplete List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by their Students in Fall 2006

27 April 2007 : Prof. Don wuebbles coauthored most cited article in 2006 by american chemical society

A recent article coauthored by Prof. Don Wuebbles published in Environmental Science and Technology was cited by the American Chemical Society publications website as a 2006 Most Cited Article based on citation data from Thomson ISI.

27 April 2007 : DAS FALL 2007 courses announced

Our class schedule for fall semster 2007 is now available on our web site. Click here to view available courses.

26 April 2007 : graduate student eric meyers awarded ams graduate fellowship

Eric Meyers, who will be a graduate student at DAS this fall, was awarded an AMS graduate fellowship to pursue his graduate studies with Prof. Greg McFarquhar.

30 March 2007: atmospheric sciences undergraduate major approved by faculty senate

The DAS undergraduate major came one step closer to reality when it was recently approved by the Faculty Senate. The final steps, approval by the Board of Trustees and the Illinois Board of Higher Education, are expected to occur by Fall 2007.

30 March 2007: PROF. bob rauber receives the campus award for excellence in graduate and professional teaching

Prof. Bob Rauber was selected to receive the Chancellor's award for Excellence in Graduate and Professional Teaching, and will be given the award at the Celebration of Teaching Excellence on 2 May 2007.

30 March 2007: PROF ATUL Jain's research featured as research highlight in both nature and geophysical research letters

A new GRL study by Prof. Atul Jain, DAS graduate student Long Cao, and Carneige Institution scientist Ken Caldeira showed that ocean acidity is increasing largely independent of climate change. These findings were highlighted by the American Geophysical Union, the UK journal Nature, and was picked up by United Press International and highlighted in several newspapers.

30 March 2007: PROF. DONNA charlevoix highlighted by campus publication for use of technology in the classroom

Prof. Donna Charlevoix was recenty featured in the "Faculty Showcase" of the Spring 2007 Campus Information Technologies and Educational Services (CITES) Education Technology Newsletter for her use of state of the art technology in DAS undergraduate classes.

30 March 2007: PROF. Don Wuebbles invited to speak in front of house science and technology committee on the future of aviation

Prof. Don Wuebbles testified at a special hearing of the US House of Representatives on March 9 regarding Aviation and its potential impact on climate change. He was also invited to join the FAA's Research, Engineering, and Development Advisory Committee.

24 Feb 2007: PROF. Don Wuebbles to lead an assessment of the potential impacts of climate change on the city of Chicago

Prof. Don Wuebbles is the lead scientist on an assessment of the potential impacts of climate on the city of Chicago that is being done at the bequest of Mayor Daley's office.

23 Feb 2007: Emeritus Prof. Yoshi Ogura boosts endowment

Emeritus professor and department founder Yoshi Ogura has generously increased his endowment to support the "Distinguished Ogura Lecture Series" and to establish "Ogura Awards" for outstanding graduate and undergraduate students within the department. We thank Prof. Ogura for his continued and long standing support of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences.

23 Feb 2007: Emeritus Prof. john walsh makes initial donation to department unrestricted endowment fund

Emeritus professor John Walsh kicked off the new department unrestriced gift fund by contributing his entire earnings from teaching ATMS 120 in the fall semester 2006. We hope his generous donation to the department will be the start of an fund that will allow the department to create opportunities to enhance our scholarship and support student excellence.

20 Feb 2007: Prof. Peter Snyder awarded NSF grant

Prof. Peter Snyder was awarded NSF funding for a study to put terrestrial ecosystem changes and the climate response into a global context where the changes are likely to affect the entire planet. The focus will be on changes in ecosystem carbon storage in the Arctic and the global implications of ecosystem changes through modification of the Northern Hemisphere general circulation. The proposed project is motivated by the consideration of the potential, but previously not quantified, impacts that climate-driven change in Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are likely to have on the global climate.

18 Feb 2007: research scientist brian jewett receives award

Dr. Brian Jewett was recently awarded the LAS Academic Professional Excellence Award by Dean Sarah Mangelsdorf.

15 Feb 2007: Prof. Greg McFarquhar named Chief scientist for the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Aerial Vehicle Program

Greg McFarquhar has recently received a grant from the Department of Energy to act as Chief Scientist for the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) programs's Aerial Vehicle Program (AVP). As part of this award Prof. McFarquhar will be working on the upcoming Cloud Land Surface Interaction Campaign (CLASIC) in Oklahoma in June 2007 and the Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC) in Alaska in April 2008.

9 Feb 2007: Spring 2007 Graduation Info

Graduation information is now available at the following link.

3 Feb 2007: Prof. Michael Schlesinger to be a member of the just-formed Illinois Climate Change Advisory Group

Michael Schlesinger, UIUC Professor of Atmospheric Sciences, has been invited by Governor Rod Blagojevich to be a member of the just-formed Illinois Climate Change Advisory Group. The charge of the ICCAG by the Governor is to consider "the full range of policies and strategies to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions in Illinois and to present its findings and recommendations to (him) by the end of June." The first and second meetings of the ICCAG will be 14 February in Chicago and 3 April in Springfield.

1 Feb 2007: Prof. Larry Di Girolamo awarded $514000 in NASA funding for MISR research

Professor Di Girolamo’s latest award continues the research his team of scientists and graduate students carried out from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) mission. MISR is a meteorological instrument on-board NASA's EOS-Terra satellite that was launched in December 1999. The research is toward continued development and validation of the methods used to derive cloud properties from MISR measurements that are subsequently used in climate research. More information on MISR can be found at

1 Feb 2007: Graduate Student Marile Colon-Robles wins $6400 NCAR ASP graduate fellowship

The purpose of Marile’s study will be to study the role of clouds in modifying the aerosol distribution in the trade winds. She will be studying the evolution of complete aerosol spectra through these clouds from sub-cloud air, through cloud processing, and until the aerosols are detrained into the clear air between clouds. Marile will be using observations taken from the NCAR C-130 during the 2004-2005 Rain in Cumulus over the Ocean (RICO) campaign. These observations include sub-cloud thermodynamics and aerosol size spectra, the concentration of activated cloud droplets and cloud updrafts. She will also be examining aerosol in the clear air between clouds including both recently detrained air and air that has was detrained some time earlier. She plans to calculate the cloud processing of the aerosols using a parcel model with an advanced condensation scheme capable of treating both concentrated salt solutions (giant aerosols and sulfate aerosols below cloud base)!