More than half a century ago, atmospheric scientists from 14 universities came together with a common vision: to create an organization where they could share resources and build collaborations to transform our understanding of weather, water, climate, and the Sun.

These visionaries recognized the need for community observational and computational facilities and a world-class research staff, which together would allow the community to carry out complex, long-term scientific programs beyond the reach of individual universities.

In 1960, the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research was born. In partnership with the National Science Foundation, UCAR established the National Center for Atmospheric Research as a federally funded research and development center. 

Since our founding, we’ve grown, but our goals haven’t changed. Now with more than 100 member colleges and universities across North America, we still strive to give researchers studying the Earth system the tools and support they need to take their science to the next level, for the benefit of society.