Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder

News

Tiny Particles Lead to Brighter Clouds in the Tropics
October 16, 2019

When clouds loft tropical air masses higher in the atmosphere, that air can carry up gases that form into tiny particles, starting a process that may end up brightening lower-level clouds, according to a CIRES-led study published today in Nature. Clouds alter Earth’s radiative balance, and ultimately climate, depending on how bright they are. And the new paper describes a process that may occur over 40 percent of the Earth’s surface, which may mean today's climate models underestimate the cooling impact of some clouds.

Old Weather “Time Machine” Opens a Treasure Trove for Researchers
October 09, 2019

It’s been the stuff of science fiction for generations: a time machine that would allow researchers to reach back into yesteryear and ask new questions about long-ago events.

This month, a NOAA-funded research team published an update to a weather “time machine” they’ve been developing since 2011. This third version of the 20th Century Reanalysis Project, or 20CRv3 for short, is a dauntingly complex, high-resolution, four-dimensional reconstruction of the global climate that estimates what the weather was for every day back to 1836.

Warm Ocean Water Attacking Edges of Antarctica's Ice Shelves
October 09, 2019

Upside-down “rivers” of warm ocean water are eroding the fractured edges of thick, floating Antarctic ice shelves from below, helping to create conditions that lead to ice-shelf breakup and sea-level rise, according to a new study.

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Karin Vergoth
CIRES-NOAA Science Writer
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