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Current Research

Summaries, photographs, and abstracts about the current projects of our researchers.

Our researchers are currently doing work in many exciting fields. In addition to the summaries, photographs, and abstracts listed here, relevant information can also be found in Publications & Presentations, JPL-Supported Research, and Extramural Projects.

 

UV-VIS RADIATIVE TRANSFER MODELING

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Atmospheric Radiative Transfer Modeling in the Los Angeles Basin (7/2013)
Researchers: Santo Fedele Colosimo, Jochen Stutz, Ross Cheung, Vijay Natraj, and Stanley Sander

Air quality remains one of the major environmental challenges in the Los Angeles Basin and many other urban areas in the world. Despite an extensive ground monitoring network, there remains a lack of information on the temporal and spatial distribution of pollutants and greenhouse gases, in particular at elevated altitudes. Consequently our understanding of emissions and chemical processing remains limited . Read More...

 

 
 

VARIATION OF DUST DEPOSITION TO THE SNOW AND VEGETATION DYNAMICS

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Variation of dust deposition to the snow in the Upper Colorado River Basin linked to vegetation dynamics in the dust source area (2/2013)
Researchers: Junran Li, Gregory Okin, Thomas Painter

The deposition of desert dust to mountain snow directly impacts the hydrologic cycle and water resource management through the depression of snow albedo and acceleration of snowmelt. However, the key processes that control the variation of dust deposition to snow are poorly understood. In this research, we compared a remotely sensed estimate of bare soil exposure from MODIS reflectance data for the period of 2002 to 2011, with dust loading at downwind mountain sites in the Western United States. Read More...

 

 
 

ATMOSPHERIC COMPOSITION AND AIR QUALITY SCIENCE

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Atmospheric Composition and Air Quality Science using data from the European METOP infrared atmopsheric sounding interferometer (IASI) (7/2013)
Researchers: Hilke Oetjen, Annmarie Eldering et al.

Ozone (O3) is the third most important anthropogenic greenhouse gas and a significant pollutant at the surface affecting human and plant health. Rapidly increasing Asian emissions of ozone precursors, land-surface changes from burning, and decreasing surface emissions in Europe and North America have resulted in unknown changes to the distribution of tropospheric ozone. The goal of this project is to create a long-term record of tropospheric ozone using Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI, launch in 2006, 2012, and 2016/17) satellite measurements Read More...

  

ANTARCTIC SEA ICE

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Scatterometer Algorithm Development for Antarctic Sea Ice Mapping (2/2013)
Researcher: Son V. Nghiem


Son V. Nghiem has been developing, adapting, and testing algorithms to detect and monitor Antarctic sea ice using scatterometer data. The objective of this research is to use QuikSCAT and Oceansat-2 scatterometer backscatter measurements to develop advanced algorithms to classify and map the Antarctic sea ice cover. While Arctic sea ice has been reduced drastically, Antarctic sea ice has increased. Read More...

 

GPS RADIO OCCULTATION OF ATMOSPHERIC BOUNDARY LAYER

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Atmospheric Boundary Layer Observations from GPS Radio Occultation over Southeast Pacific Ocean
Researchers: Feiqin Xie, D.L. Wu, C.O. Ao, A.J. Mannucci & E.R. Kursinski

The shallow atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) over the southeast (SE) Pacific Ocean is featured with a strong temperature inversion and a sharp moisture gradient across the ABL top, which is notoriously difficult to simulate in weather and climate models and is extremely challenge to measure from the space. The strong moisture and temperature gradients result in a sharp refractivity gradient that can be precisely detected by the high vertical resolution Global Positioning System (GPS) radio occultation (RO) bending angle and refractivity measurements. Read More... 

 

CLIMATE VARIABILITY OF TROPICAL ATMOSPHERE

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Intraseasonal Variability over the Eastern Pacific and its Linkage to Extreme Events
Researchers: Xianan Jiang & Duane Waliser

During boreal summer, convective activity over the eastern Pacific (EPAC) inter-tropical convergence zone (ITCZ) exhibits vigorous intraseasonal variability (ISV), which exerts significant influences on regional weather and climate systems, including N. American monsoon as well as tropical cyclone activity over both EPAC and Gulf and Mexico. Read More... 

 
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Vertical Diabatic Heating Structures of the Madden-Julian Oscillation and Convectively-Couples Equatorial Waves (CCEWs)
Researchers: Xianan Jiang & Duane Waliser

As a dominant subseasonal mode of tropical atmospheric variability, the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) exerts pronounced influences on global climate and weather systems , and represents primary sources of predictability on subseasonal time scales. Current general circulation models (GCMs), however, exhibit limited capability in representing this prominent tropical variability mode. Read More...

  
 
For earlier research projects, please visit our Archive.