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UCAR Update

April 2008


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In brief
Accelerated Scientific Discovery initiative on NCAR's newest supercomputer, bluefire
Tropical cyclones, thermohaline circulation on tap for Junior Faculty Forum
Register now for CCSM Annual Workshop
WRF workshop coming in June
VSP opportunities at NOAA
New from COMET: Urban environments, fire weather, incident meteorologists
Reminders from previous issues


Accelerated Scientific Discovery initiative on NCAR's newest supercomputer, bluefire
This summer NCAR will commission one of the first IBM POWER6 computers, named bluefire. A large portion of bluefire is being reserved from September through November 2008 for Accelerated Scientific Discovery (ASD), the successor to the Breakthrough Science initiative in 2007 for university and NCAR researchers. NCAR's Computational and Information Systems Laboratory anticipates making a few very large allocations (more than 300,000 general accounting units, or GAUs) to be used between 1 September and 30 November.

University researchers in the atmospheric, oceanic, and closely related sciences who have received and used a large allocation at NCAR or another supercomputing center are invited to apply to ASD. An active NSF award for the proposed research or for a natural extension of the research is required. Projects must present an opportunity to study a challenging and important scientific problem using codes that can efficiently scale up to hundreds of processors.

Proposal deadline: 21 May
Contact: Ginger Caldwell, NCAR/CISL, 303-497-1229
2008 Accelerated Scientific Discovery at NCAR

Tropical cyclones, thermohaline circulation on tap for Junior Faculty Forum
The 2008 Early Career Scientists Assembly (ECSA) Junior Faculty Forum on Future Scientific Directions will examine two types of extreme events on widely differing time scales that may both be subject to abrupt or long-term changes. The ECSA forum, titled "The Thermohaline Circulation and Tropical Cyclones in Past, Present, and Future Climates" will be held 8-10 July at NCAR. Two sessions, one on each phenomenon, will explore observational and modeling perspectives on its past, present, and future behavior. There will also be a joint session to look at common interactions and/or techniques in understanding past, present and future variations of the coupled ocean-atmosphere system using paleoclimate proxies and models.

Those interested in attending must complete an online application, including a curriculum vita (preferably in PDF format).

Application deadline: 30 April
Contact: Scott Briggs, NCAR/SERE/ASP, 303-497-1607
2008 ECSA Junior Faculty Forum on Future Scientific Directions


Register now for CCSM Annual Workshop
NCAR/ESSL/CGD will host the 13th Annual Community Climate System Model (CCSM) Workshop in Breckenridge, Colorado, on 17-19 June. This year's workshop is a combination of plenary presentations, special interest presentations by the CCSM working groups, and a poster session for participants to highlight their work.

Contact: Barbara Ballard, NCAR/ESSL/CGD, 303-497-1358
13th Annual CCSM Workshoip


WRF workshop coming in June
The 9th Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) Users' Workshop will take place at NCAR's Center Green campus in Boulder on 23-27 June. Papers focusing on WRF model development and testing are solicited, particularly in the area of model numerics and physics, model verification, regional climate, high-impact weather, hurricanes, regional climate, data assimilation, ensemble forecasting and atmospheric chemistry. There will be a poster session, voluntarily organized working-group meetings, and a WRF Help Desk.

Deadline for short abstracts: 25 April
Deadline for early registration: 11 June
Contact: Sudie Kelly, NCAR/ESSL/MMM, 303-497-8951
9th Annual WRF Users' Workshop


VSP opportunities at NOAA
UOP's Visiting Scientist Programs is now recruiting for several openings within NOAA. See the VSP website for more details beyond the summaries below, including application procedures.

Visiting scientist, Office of Research and Applications, National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS), Camp Springs, Maryland. The selected scientist will be involved in the operational impact of satellite-derived surface vector wind on numerical weather prediction. The position will be within the Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation, working in close partnership with personnel at the NESDIS Ocean Surface Winds Team, the National Centers for Environmental Prediction, and the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorology Laboratory. Applicants should have a Ph.D. in atmospheric, oceanic, physics or related sciences. Applications will be reviewed on receipt and the position will remain open until filled.

Research meteorologist, Tropical Prediction Center/National Hurricane Center, Miami, Florida. The selected applicant will be involved in the area of satellite retrievals of ocean surface vector winds and will work with forecasters and other scientists at TPC/NHC. The applicant may occasionally travel to NCAR (Boulder), project partner organizations, and relevant conferences and meetings. Applicants should have a Ph.D. or M.S. in meteorology or atmospheric science. Applications will be reviewed on receipt and the position will remain open until filled.

Postdoctoral fellow, Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory at Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey. The successful candidate will work with a team of scientists to implement and evaluate a new approach to parameterizing boundary-layer clouds based on sub-grid distributions of motion and moisture that govern cloud properties. Extensive use will be made of data from VOCALS, the VAMOS (Variability of the American Monsoon Systems) Ocean-Cloud-Atmosphere-Land Study. The applicant should have a Ph.D. and experience in (1) general circulation, cloud-resolving, or large-eddy modeling and/or (2) development of physical parameterizations for general circulation models or numerical weather prediction. The application deadline is 15 July.

Contact: Julie Cross, UOP/VSP, 303-497-8364
UCAR Visiting Scientist Programs


New from COMET: Moisture and precipitation, dams, deformation zones, fire weather
Below are details of five new online publications available from UOP/COMET. Please see the accompanying Web links for more details.

Chapter 6, The Distribution of Moisture and Precipitation
This is the second published chapter of the online textbook "Introduction to Tropical Meteorology." Chapter 6 covers tropical moisture and precipitation distribution, which governs life in the tropics and drives the global energy and water cycles.

Dams and Dam Failure – Module 1: Terminology and Open Channel Hydraulics
This is the first module of a two-part series offering an introduction to the science explaining catastrophic dam failure and flood-wave prediction methods associated with these events. In this module, Richard Koehler, the national hydrologic science training coordinator for NOAA/NWS, explains key terminology and concepts, including dam types and purposes, failure statistics, general dam-failure processes, open channel hydraulics, critical flow, the Manning's equation, and conveyance.

Deformation Zone Distribution
This module is part of the series "Dynamic Feature Identification: The Satellite Palette." By diagnosing flow characteristics, the meteorologist is able to quickly deduce the location and relative intensities of the associated vorticity centers as well as the relative sizes of the associated circulations. This information reveals important details regarding feature motion and thermal advection, and thus its diagnosis should be a critical part of the forecast process.

Assessing Fire Danger
This module explores techniques for recognizing weather and fuel conditions contributing to fire danger. It includes a matrix of data sources offering useful weather, fuels, and other information related to fire ignition, spread, and intensity. An overview of situational awareness practices provides information relevant to forecasters in the office or field.

Stability, Smoke Management, and Fire Weather Forecasting
This module examines fire and smoke management operations and the effects of atmospheric stability on fire behavior and the transport of smoke. Topics covered include the impacts of inversions as they form, persist, and dissipate and how best to relate forecast information on these phases to customers.

Contact: Hildy Kane, UOP/COMET, 303-497-8470
COMET MetEd site


Reminders from previous issues

Applicants and nominees sought for new NCAR director
Deadline for initial consideration: 30 April

CLIVAR launches new postdoc program
Application deadline: 1 July

GLOBE research symposium in South Africa
Registration deadline: 2 June


UCAR Update is e-mailed monthly to all UCAR member and affiliate representatives. Please forward to colleagues and students in your department or at other institutions.

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Questions or news tips: Bob Henson, 303-497-8605
Published by UCAR Communications

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