Dr. Allison Wing – Rooting out the errors in storm simulation models
On the eve of every hurricane season, climatologists around the world offer their studied prognostications: Will we see high activity? Low activity? How will ocean temperature affect storm development? What are the chances of a powerful storm making landfall?
Scientists have leveraged improved climate models to simulate tropical cyclone behavior with an ever-increasing degree of accuracy, but basic modeling errors continue to limit the reliability of their forecasts.
Now, researchers from Florida State University, Columbia University and the University of Washington are working with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to root out those nagging errors. With the support of a $500,000 grant from the NOAA Research, Modeling, Analysis, Predictions and Projections Program (MAPP), the team will develop diagnostic tools to identify the hidden biases that compromise high-powered climate models.
Ada Monzon, who earned an MS degree with Dr. Sharon Nicholson, is the 2019 winner of the AMS Award for Broadcast Meteorology for her long-term commitment to informing, educating, and inspiring resiliency in the people of Puerto Rico before, during, and after extreme events like Hurricane Maria.
Ms. Monzon won the AMS Joanne Simpson Mentorship Award in 2016 and was elected an AMS Fellow in 2013.
This year (2017-2018) four undergraduates completed honor’s theses, earning the Honors in the Major distinction. Dr. Jeff Chanton is the adviser for this program (firstname.lastname@example.org).
To do this, an undergraduate student in their junior year would find a faculty advisor and do a project under their direction. see https://honors.fsu.edu/honors-major
Update on services for Dr. Krishnamurti:
A public memorial for Prof. T. N. Krishnamurti will be held 3-6pm on Friday, 23 February, at the FSU Alumni Center Grand Ballroom. http://alumni.fsu.edu/alumni-center/map. Additional information, including a block of hotel rooms for those wishing to attend from out of town, will be published here soon. In lieu of flowers, the Krishnamurti family asks that donations be made to the EOAS Foundation Fund at: https://www.eoas.fsu.edu/about-us/giving/
Update on the availability of hotel rooms for services:
For those interested in attending the memorial from out of town, there is a hotel room block at the Residence Inn on Gaines Street. It is a very convenient hotel as it’s on the edge of campus, has a free shuttle to/from the airport and the shuttle will also take you to anywhere near/on campus, including the memorial with an advance reservation. The reduced rate is $139/night. Should you be renting a car at the airport, the hotel parking fee of $10/night is waived with the block. The link to the hotel block to make a reservation is: https://tinyurl.com/krishmemorial
Reservations need to made by February 20 to guarantee the rate. The rate is valid for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights surrounding the memorial.
The Department of Earth Ocean and Atmospheric Science is saddened by the death of one of our premier faculty, Dr. Nancy Marcus. Nancy arrived at FSU thirty years ago, in 1987, after receiving a BS from Goucher College and her PhD from Yale. She was director of the FSU Marine Lab for 11 years, from 1989 to 2001. She was selected as Chair of the Department of Oceanography in 2003, and Dean of the Graduate School in 2005.
As women were beginning to make their mark in the field of Oceanography, Nancy Marcus was in their vanguard. In addition to leading in the scientific field, she took it upon herself to open the doors to science careers to women and other groups not traditionally represented. She was the Director of the Women in Math Science and Engineering Program (WIMSE) here at FSU from 2001 until she took up leadership at the graduate school. When she was awarded the Lawton Professorship in 2001, rather than spending her Lawton time promoting her own research, she reviewed the scientific progress of women, particularly here at FSU. She gave up an opportunity for self promotion to advance the cause of female scientists. Said Nancy, “I want to ensure they have the opportunities and experiences that I had because they were wonderful experiences. It goes for women, but it also goes for ethnic and racial diversity, which in many cases could be a lot better.”
Prof. Mainak Mookherjee, an Assistant Professor of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences at Florida State University, was awarded the 2017 Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award from the Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU).
“We are all very proud of Mainak’s award. This is a very competitive award and it speaks highly of Mainak’s research program here at FSU,” stated Prof. James Tull, Chair of the EOAS Department.
The Earth Materials Laboratory led by Prof. Mookherjee examines the behaviors of minerals, melts, and fluids, at conditions relevant to the Earth and Planetary interiors. The Powe award to Mookherjee will support neutron scattering measurements at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory to characterize atomistic scale structure of minerals at conditions relevant to the Earth’s interior. Prior to joining FSU in 2016, Dr. Mookherjee was a Research Scientist at the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Cornell University. He earned his PhD in Earth Sciences at the University of Cambridge, UK. He has held research positions at the University of Michigan, Yale University, and Bayerisches Geoinstitute in Bayreuth, Germany. (more…)
The Marine Field Methods class had its field week earlier this month. They worked from the FSU Marine Lab’s pontoon boat for several days. Two students, Taylor Kirkpatrick and Linoj Vijayan, are part of the EOAS Aquatics degree program. (more…)
Several EOAS undergrad students participated in Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) this year at FSU. The program provides high-achieving students with the opportunity to conduct research 5-10 hours a week assisting a faculty member, Ph.D. student, or company; meet bi-monthly with a UROP Student Leader and fellow UROP students; receive personalized guidance about research and campus resources; and present at the annual undergraduate research symposium. (more…)
A trove of exceptionally well preserved fossils has been discovered at Ya Ha Tinda Ranch near Banff National Park, helping to expand scientists’ knowledge of marine life that existed here more than 180 million years ago.
And an EOAS researcher was part of the discovery team. Benjamin Gill, a professor at Virginia Tech was talking with Theodore Them, an EOAS Arts & Sciences Fellow postdoc, when he noticed Theodore standing right on top of a lobster. They looked around and discovered fossils all around them. (more…)
Dr. Allison Wing joined the EOAS faculty in January 2017. Before arriving at FSU, she completed a postdoctoral research fellowship at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and received her Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Wing is an atmospheric scientist who studies tropical convection, tropical cyclones, and climate.
One of her research foci is the organization of tropical convection; an example of a tropical cloud cluster is shown in the accompanying image. Dr. Wing is an expert on the phenomenon of self-aggregation, which is the tendency of tropical clouds to spontaneously clump together solely due to interactions between the clouds and the surrounding environment. Self-aggregation occurs in numerical model simulations of an imaginary patch of the tropical atmosphere, and one of Dr. Wing’s current areas of research involves determining exactly how the behavior seen in numerical models is borne out in the real world. Organized convection contributes significantly to tropical rainfall and cloudiness, and, when clouds cluster together more, they change the amount of cloudiness and humidity in the surrounding large-scale environment. Therefore, the behavior of tropical convection is essential to understanding tropical and global climate and climate sensitivity. (more…)
Subduction zones are characterized by significant geological activities including arc volcanism and earthquakes. At subduction zone settings, hydrated crusts are subducted into the mantle. This releases fluids and rehydrates mantle wedges. It also provides an additional source of aqueous fluid above the slab causing melting and eventually arc volcanism. Often, mantle wedge regions are characterized by anomalously high electrical conductivity signals. Geophysicists have been invoking aqueous fluids with enhanced salinity to explain such observations. (more…)