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

Melody Avery

Tropical cyclones and strong thunderstorms can move chemicals and water vapor from the earth's surface up ten to twelve miles into the atmosphere.  Given the current relentless increase in the Earth’s surface temperature, what impact will the increased available energy have on the height and strength of deep convective storm systems, and how is this changing the composition and thermal structure of the atmosphere at and above these high cloud tops? For example, increasing the height of tropical clouds has been shown to cause a climate warming effect, and changes in ozone and water vapor above the cloud tops can also influence global surface warming.  Melody Avery will collaborate with Eric Ray, Dale Hurst and NOAA scientists Sean Davis and Karen Rosenlof to combine satellite, balloon-borne and aircraft in situ measurements with modeling to better quantify the impact of intermittent strong convection and tropical cyclones on the vertical distribution of water vapor, ozone and aerosols in the atmosphere, and ultimately on the Earth's climate.