Bangladesh in the summer monsoon. International Space Station Expedition 4, NASA, 2002-06-03
Shallow stratocumulus, deep convective clouds in the North American monsoon. VIIRS NASA Worldview, 2021-07-02
Dust moving out of the North African heat low in winter. Image: NASA MODIS 2003-02-01
Arabian Sea, where the Somali jet drives ocean upwelling. NASA MODIS 2018-11-23, color enhanced by Norman Kuring, NASA
Our group’s research focuses on large-scale climate dynamics—we work to understand how atmospheric circulations, ocean interactions, radiative transfer, and land surface processes control regional and global climate. Some of our research centers on monsoons, which are continental-scale atmospheric circulations that deliver water to billions of people in Asia, Africa, the Americas, and northern Australia; monsoon winds also constitute a major component of Earth’s global atmospheric circulation. We also study extreme weather and climate phenomena, seeking to understand how fluid dynamics and thermodynamics govern the behavior of atmospheric vortices, heat waves, and intense precipitation. We pay particular attention to the phase changes of water in Earth’s atmosphere, as the interaction of precipitating clouds with planetary-scale flow is one of the central unresolved problems of planetary science. In all of our work, we combine theory, observational analyses, and numerical models to discover how the world around us works.
WorldMonsoons.org, a website with educational pages and recent news about monsoons
Global track datasets of monsoon disturbances:
Somali jet index, a measure of the strength of the South Asian monsoon circulation, and of roughly 30 percent of the global cross-equatorial flow
South Asian vertical shear index, the strength of the vertical shear of the zonal wind over South Asian. This was developed by Webster and Yang (1992, QJRMS) as a measure of the strength of the South Asian monsoon circulation.
Output from an idealized quasi-global aquaplanet model run without a convective parameterization (through use of the hypohydrostatic rescaling), from our paper that used this model to study the response of extreme precipitation to uniform surface warming.
There is an opening for a Ph.D. student to start in our group in Fall 2024, with applications due in early December 2023.