Opportunities and resources for the UCAR community
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UCAR Update

APRIL 2017


On April 4 we received word from Washington of passage of legislation with great importance to our community, the Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act. As UCAR noted in a news release marking the event, this bipartisan bill is the first major weather legislation since the early 1990s. It focuses on improving subseasonal to seasonal and interannual prediction, as well as forecasts for destructive storms A key goal is to make it easier for research findings to be adopted by forecasters and commercial weather companies. I very much appreciate the nonpartisan efforts at UCAR and in the broader community in educating members of Congress and their staffers about  the legislation’s impact on science during the long journey to ratification.

That same day I joined Louis Uccellini (NOAA) and Mary Glackin (The Weather Company, IBM) on Capitol Hill, where we provided testimony before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, and Science. This subcommittee is chaired by Richard Shelby of Alabama; the ranking member is Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire. My testimony  highlighted the collaborative development by NCAR, NOAA, and several community members of the national water model for the National Water Center in Alabama and how we achieved success with this research to operations transition.

Spring has also brought news of change at NCAR|UCAR. Research Applications Lab Director Brant Foote has announced his plan to retire from NCAR in early summer. Brant has led RAL since 1994, building a laboratory that is now recognized as a world leader in the application of a wide range of atmospheric sciences for the welfare of society. RAL Deputy Director Bill Mahoney is serving as the lab's interim director. An international search for a permanent director will be launched in a few months.

Rich Jeffries, Director of COMET, decided to leave his position and began phased retirement from UCAR on April 1. Rich is continuing to serve part time as a senior advisor to the UCAR Community Programs. An international search for a new COMET Director is underway.  

The National Science Foundation will recompete the management and operation of NCAR this year. UCAR, which has managed NCAR continuously since its inception in 1960, has been anticipating NSF’s request for proposals, which was formally released on April 11. The program solicitation, announcing the competition and inviting proposals, is on the NSF website. UCAR leadership has been preparing for this solicitation for some time, and we will spend the next several months focusing and refining our response.

Finally, like many of you, I was surprised and saddened by the sudden death of Matthew Parker. I had the pleasure of meeting him during his first annual meeting as the incoming AMS President in January. He had many ideas and plans for AMS and brought with him a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion. He will be sorely missed. We also recently lost a key figure from NCAR|UCAR’s earliest days, Edwin Wolffe. Our condolences go to the Parker and Wolffe families. 

Antonio J. Busalacchi
UCAR President



In recognition of the passing of organizational colleagues and leaders in our community, we are providing links on our website to obituaries as we learn of their deaths. We are sad to report the most recent additions:

On the web: Colleagues We Will Miss


The World Meteorological Organization announced the official release of its digitized International Cloud Atlas on March 23, World Meteorological Day. UCAR joins the global atmospheric and related Earth system science community in celebrating this resource for researchers, educators, and the public.  Congratulations to the revision team chair, Steve Cohn (director of the Hyperloop Advanced Research Partnership and former NCAR researcher and manager), the team members, and all the citizen participants who contributed to the effort. There is more information about the atlas - last updated in 1987, before the internet era - in this WMO news release.



▹ EarthCube All Hands Meeting

EarthCube welcomes project participants, new PIs, and all other interested parties to the 2017 All Hands Meeting: Making Connections & Moving Forward, June 7-9, in Seattle. Since the first All Hands Meeting in 2014, this gathering has been a critical opportunity to make connections, communicate advances, and help plan the future of EarthCube.

The 2017 meeting aims to bridge the disciplinary divide between and among geoscientists and computer scientists by exploring the gaps in current implementations and finding where communications can be strengthened to foster adoption and discovery of resources. 

Poster abstracts/demos deadline: April 15
Lodging discount deadline: May 2
Event: June 7-9
Details: EarthCube 2017 All Hands Meeting
Contact: Loretta Quinn, UCAR Cooperative Programs for the Advancement of Earth System Science,

▹ Workshop for Sys Admins on High Performance Clustered Computing - Linux Cluster Institute

Introductory Workshop led by NCAR | UCAR & University of Wyoming

Please help spread the word to Linux system administrator colleagues who may be new to high performance computing. In just five days, participants will:

  • Learn HPC system administration concepts and technologies and how to apply them
  • Get hands-on skills building a small test cluster in lab sessions
  • Hear real-life stories and get to ask experts questions in panel discussions

Hosted on the University of Wyoming campus in Laramie. Linux Cluster Institute LCI) is an international forum for sharing information on management, administration, and advanced computing techniques for high performance clustered computing. 

Registration deadline: April 30 for early registration
Workshop: May 22-26
Location: University of Wyoming, Laramie
Details: LCI 2017 Introductory Workshop
Contact: Shilo Hall, NCAR Computational and Information Systems Lab,


▹ NCAR Air Quality Open House

In celebration of Air Quality Awareness week, NCAR is hosting an open house featuring information and family-friendly activities about air quality. If you are in the area please join us to learn from experts about air quality, how we measure it, and how it affects plants, animals, and humans. NCAR's new air quality exhibit will also be featured. Bring questions and mingle with scientists from NCAR, NASA, the National Park Service, the Regional Air Quality Council, the University of Colorado, Boulder County Public Health, Colorado Department of Health and Environment, GO3-The Global Ozone Project, and Ball Aerospace. Local organizations will showcase activities and resources. This event is free and open to the public.
Event: Wednesday, May 3 from 5-8 pm
Location: NCAR Mesa Lab- 1850 Table Mesa Drive, Boulder
Details: NCAR Air Quality Open House
Contact: Eileen Carpenter, UCAR Center for Science Education,


▹ Weather Research & Forecasting Model Users' Workshop

Papers focusing on development and testing in all areas of model applications are especially encouraged. Authors may request either a poster or oral presentation, although posters are encouraged due to time constraints.

Deadline: May 22 for early registration
WRF Users' Workshop: June 12-16
Location: NCAR in Boulder
Details: WRF Users' Workshop
Contact: Kris Marwitz, NCAR Mesoscale and Microscale Meteorology Lab,


▹ FORMOSAT-3/COSMIC Data Users' Workshop

COSMIC is pleased to announce the 10th FORMOSAT-3/COSMIC Data Users' Workshop, which will be held in conjunction with the 6th International Radio Occultation Working Group (IROWG) meeting. The workshop will take place September 21-27, 2017, at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado.

The series of FORMOSAT-3/COSMIC Data Users' Workshops promotes dialogue between RO data providers and data users, promoting and broadening the application of radio occultation (RO) data in various science disciplines, including weather, climate, and space weather. This workshop will follow the objectives of previous workshops, with a highlight on the progress of the upcoming FORMOSAT-7/COSMIC-2 mission and the opportunities it will provide for different fields.

Anyone interested in the occultation methodology and data processing, receiver technology and precise orbit determination, RO operational and scientific applications, and future missions is encouraged to attend.

The IROWG meetings are open to RO data users and data providers, and are intended to facilitate the exchange of scientific and operational information between governmental and commercial RO data providers, the research community, and the user community.

Deadline for abstract submission: July 1
Workshop: September 21-27
Location: Seattle, WA
Details: Workshop and IROWG meeting
Contact: Becky Cotter, UCAR COSMIC,


▹ Software Engineer/Programmer Opportunity, New Website - CPAESS 

Cooperative Programs for the Advancement of Earth System Science


Visiting Scientist Software Engineer/Programmer II
UCAR CPAESS is seeking to fill a Visiting Scientist position at the NOAA Office of Coast Survey in Silver Spring, Maryland. This position will focus on the development of an experimental service for disseminating observational and short-range oceanographic forecast guidance in a format usable by electronic navigation systems for testing by commercial partners. This is a one-year position.

Deadline: Prior to May 15 for initial consideration; open until filled
Location: Silver Spring, MD
DetailsNOS Visiting Scientist Software Engineer/Programmer II
Contact: UCAR Cooperative Programs for the Advancement of Earth System Science,

CPAESS Website Debuts
Find event management services, science and discovery partnerships, and career opportunities for postdoctoral and visiting scientists on the new CPAESS website. The new site puts all the services and staff formerly available from the Joint Office for Science Support and Visiting Scientists Program—and more — at your fingertips.

Details: Cooperative Programs for the Advancement of Earth System Science
Contact: Susanne Demaree, UCAR CPAESS,


▹ New from the COMET Program


Gravity for Geodesy I: Foundations 
The first lesson of a two-part series intended to provide professionals with basic science background on the Earth's gravity field and what causes its variations. It covers Newton's laws with a focus on Earth's gravity field as it applies to geodesy. After a review of the basics of Newtonian gravitation and gravity, it explores how density, altitude, and latitude affect gravity.

Translation - German

(also in French, Spanish)

Identifizierung von Strukturen in Satellitenbildern: Conveyor Belts
(Satellite Feature Identification: Conveyor Belts; also in French, Spanish)


Translation resources

COMET Translation Resource Center
The center supports the World Meteorological Organization community in its efforts to expand the availability of training materials through translation. Here you will find resources to guide and support your translation efforts and a forum to exchange ideas and resources. The guide is also available tin French and Spanish.

Details: All MetEd lessons, courses & translations
Contact: UCAR COMET Program,


▹ Professional, Technical, Postdoctoral Careers, Student Internships

On the web

Via email - OppsList, for the UCAR community & beyond

Subscribe to UCAR OppsList to receive timely announcements in your inbox of professional and student opportunities at NCAR|UCAR, at UCAR member colleges and universities, and in the broader atmospheric and Earth system science community.

▹ Reminders

From our previous issue

Sub-Seasonal Climate Forecast Rodeo - Cash Prizes!
Deadline: May 13
Details and to Register: Forecast Rodeo
Contact: Ken Nowak, Bureau of Reclamation,

Call for Nominations to UCAR Governance Committees & Board
Deadline: June 16
Details: Submit your nominations here
Reference: List of UCAR Member Universities and Member Representatives
Contact: Aneka Finley, UCAR Governance,



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