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Research Highlight

Skillful seasonal prediction of wind energy resources in the contiguous United States

June 12, 2024 – This study explored the extent to which the strong year-to-year variations of wind energy resources in the contiguous United States may be predictable using GFDL’s SPEAR seasonal prediction system. The authors demonstrate SPEAR’s capability for predicting the observed strong year-to-year variations of spring wind energy resources with great skill over the Southern Great Plains, in which more than half of the total U.S. wind capacity is located.


P.C.D. (Chris) Milly Elected to National Academy of Engineering

June 4, 2024 – P.C.D. (Chris) Milly, a Research Hydrologist at GFDL from 1988 to 2022, has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering for “advances in the understanding of global and continental hydrology and their interactions with a changing climate.” This prestigious recognition places Dr. Milly among 114 new members elected this year for their contributions to engineering research, practice, or education. Dr. Milly’s election acknowledges his seminal work in hydrology and climate science, especially his insights into the impacts of climate change on freshwater availability.

Research Highlight

Cloud Radiative Effects Associated With Daily Weather Regimes

May 28, 2024 – This research Investigates the effect of high-impact storms on Earth’s radiation budget, in order to better constrain climate models and improve weather and climate forecasts. Using detailed satellite observations and reanalysis data, the author categorized daily weather patterns into different types and measured the cloud radiative effects (CRE) associated with each type.

Research Highlight

The GFDL variable-resolution global chemistry-climate model for research at the nexus of US climate and air quality extremes

May 20, 2024 – In the U.S., air pollution includes contributions from multiple local human and natural sources, as well as transported sources like wildfire smoke from Canada, dust plumes from Africa, and intercontinental pollution from Asia. Accurate projection of future climate and air quality at scales relevant to local and regional stakeholders requires a seamless modeling system that can provide detailed information over a targeted region, while still integrating the global Earth system components in a computationally efficient manner.

Research Highlight

Poleward intensification of midlatitude extreme winds under warmer climate

April 29, 2024 – Given the significant risks posed by near-surface extreme wind speeds associated with midlatitude cyclones to lives, livelihoods, and infrastructure, it is imperative to understand their physical changes, including magnitudes and patterns, under human-induced global climate change. This study used GFDL’s high-resolution (50 km grid-spacing) atmospheric climate model, AM4, to investigate the global impact of midlatitude cyclones on extreme wind speed events, in both hemispheres, under a warmer climate.


Understanding Earth through GFDL’s Advanced Global Models

April 25, 2024 – In celebration of Earth Month, GFDL shares how the lab is investing to meet weather and climate goals through some of its advanced global models: CM4, SPEAR, ESM4, and SHiELD. These realistic models play an important role in enhancing our comprehension of the Earth system, each providing unique insights into the science underpinning our understanding and enabling predictions and projections.

Research Highlight

Kilometer-scale global warming simulations and active sensors reveal changes in tropical deep convection

March 28, 2024 – Under global warming, changes in the location and structure of the deep convection in the tropics have profound consequences for tropical climate. The tropics are characterized by the ubiquitous presence of high ice clouds formed by detrainment from precipitating deep convection. The bulk of these clouds are so-called anvil clouds in extensive formations that shield the convective centers.


Celebrating Women’s History Month with Mingjing Tong

March 25, 2024 – GFDL celebrates Women’s History Month by recognizing the contributions of Mingjing Tong, a meteorologist, whose work focuses on improving hurricane and severe weather forecasting. Dr. Tong, a member of GFDL’s Weather and Climate Dynamics Division, previously worked as a hurricane specialist for NOAA’s National Weather Service.

Research Highlight

Atmospheric rivers over eastern US affected by Pacific/North America pattern

March 12, 2024 – There is a growing awareness that atmospheric river (AR) activities are responsible for a wide range of environmental and socioeconomic impacts on the West coast of the U.S. The related heavy rainfall, snowfall, and associated floods, especially during winter, have been a focus of many previous studies.