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University Catalog|Office of the Registrar

Department of Atmospheric Science

Alfred R. Rodi, Department Head
6034 Engineering Building
Phone: (307) 766-3245, FAX: (307) 766-2635
Website: http://www.atmos.uwyo.edu

Professors

TERRY DESHLER, B.A. University of Wyoming 1969; M.S. 1975; Ph.D. 1982; Professor of Atmospheric Science 1999, 1991.
BART GEERTS, Licenciaat Physical Geography Katholieke University, Belgium 1984; Engineer in Irrigation Sciences, Katholieke University, Belgium 1985; Ph.D. University of Washington 1990; Professor of Atmospheric Science 2011, 1999.
ROBERT D. KELLY, B.A. University of Wyoming 1973; M.S. 1978; Ph.D. University of Chicago 1982; Professor of Atmospheric Science 1990, 1984.
THOMAS R. PARISH, B.S. University of Wisconsin 1975; M.S. 1977; Ph.D. 1980; Professor of Atmospheric Science 1990, 1980.
ALFRED R. RODI, B.S. University of Chicago 1967; M.S. 1969; Ph.D. University of Wyoming 1981; Professor of Atmospheric Science 1993, 1981.
JEFFERSON R. SNIDER, B.S. University of Oregon 1979; M.S. University of Arizona 1982; Ph.D. University of Wyoming 1990; Professor of Atmospheric Science 2004, 1990.

Associate Professors

DEREK C. MONTAGUE, B.Sc. University of Southampton (UK) 1964; Ph.D. 1967; Associate Professor of Atmospheric Science 1988.
ZHIEN WANG, B.S. Anhui Normal University (China) 1990; M.S. Chinese Academy of Sciences 1994; Ph.D. University of Utah 2000; Associate Professor of Atmospheric Science 2009, 2004.

Assistant Professors

SHANE MURPHY, B.S. University of Colorado 2000; Ph.D. California Institute of Technology 2009; Assistant Professor of Atmospheric Science 2011.

Professor Emeritus

John D. Marwitz, Gabor Vali
Adjunct Professors
W.A. Cooper, D.J. Hofmann, C.A. Knight, W.R. Sand, C.P.R. Saunders

Atmospheric Science

Atmospheric Science is a rapidly developing discipline in which meteorology, physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, mathematics and computer science are all being applied in an effort to better understand the earth's atmosphere. The entire development of atmospheric science demonstrates how progress can result from the application of knowledge developed in the basic sciences to a complex environmental system. Concurrently, atmospheric scientists develop many observational and analytical techniques unique to the study of the atmosphere. Over the past decades, atmospheric science developed vigorously, stimulated by the availability of the latest satellite, ground-based and aircraft observations, as well as the availability of large computers for numerical simulations of atmospheric processes. At the same time, the importance of the atmosphere as a crucial resource in the welfare and survival of humankind is being recognized, as knowledge about how the atmosphere behaves is obtained.

The Department of Atmospheric Science offers graduate programs leading to the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees.

In these graduate programs, great emphasis is placed on the active research involvement of students both during the academic year and during the summer months. The low student to faculty ratio in the department ensures an atmosphere of vital cooperation among students, faculty and staff. Student theses form integral parts of the department's research productivity and almost always lead to publishable results.

Research interests in the department center around cloud and precipitation physics, cloud and mesoscale atmospheric dynamics, boundary layer processes, tropospheric and stratospheric aerosols and chemistry, ozone depletion, wind energy, global change, instrumentation and air quality. These interests are also reflected in the department's academic program, which has the breadth and depth necessary to give students a background for entering into many different types of employment upon graduation.

A number of unique research tools are available in the department. Prominent among these is the King Air research aircraft which carries extensive instrumentation and computer-directed data acquisition systems. The department maintains a well-equipped observatory at the peak of 11,000 foot Elk Mountain. The tropospheric and stratospheric balloon launch facility is used to sample aerosols, volcanic plumes, clouds and ozone in Laramie, and in both the north and south polar regions. Excellent laboratory facilities are available in the department's spacious quarters. These laboratories focus on aerosol and nucleation research, on atmospheric optics, remote sensing, and atmospheric chemistry. Well-equipped electronic and mechanical construction and design facilities are conducive for work in instrumentation development. A wide range of computer facilities are available, providing excellent support both in hardware and software for research activities and for learning.

A prerequisite for admission to the graduate program is a bachelor's degree in meteorology, engineering, physics, chemistry, mathematics or a similar relevant discipline. For general regulations concerning admission and degree requirements, the Graduate Bulletin of the University of Wyoming should be consulted. Graduate assistantships are available by application to the department and are awarded on the basis of past record and promise for achievement.

For material containing further details on curriculum and research programs, write to the graduate admissions coordinator or visit the website at http://www.uwyo.edu/atsc/.

Graduate Study

The Department of Atmospheric Science offers degree programs leading to the master of science (Plan A only) and doctor of philosophy degrees.

The department has strong research programs in the following areas:  cloud physics and dynamics; tropospheric aerosols and clouds; stratospheric aerosol and ozone; boundary layer processes; remote sensing; and airborne- and balloon-borne instrumentation. The department’s observational facilities are: 1) the King Air research aircraft (UWKA); 2) the Wyoming Balloon Launch Facility; 3) the Elk Mountain Observatory at 11,000 ft altitude; 4) the Wyoming Cloud Radar (WCR) and Wyoming Cloud Lidar (WCL) for the study of cloud structure and composition; and 5) the Keck Aerosol Laboratory. The UWKA, WCR, and WCL are designated Lower Atmospheric Observing Facilities by the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Please refer to the departmental homepage at www.atmos.uwyo.edu for programmatic updates, or contact the department directly.

Program Specific Admission Requirements

Admission based on the university minimum requirements. Admissions are competitive.

Program Specific Graduate Assistantships  

Assistantships are offered for both the M.S. and Ph.D. tracks.

Program Specific Degree Requirements

Master’s Program

Approval of research plan by the graduate committee (at the end of year one)

Colloquium and oral defense of M.S. thesis

Approval of M.S. thesis by the graduate committee

Requires a minimum of 26 hours of acceptable graduate coursework and four hours of thesis research and a thesis (final written project).

21 in-residence coursework hours

Doctoral Program

Qualifying assessment exam

Approval of research plan by the graduate committee

At least one colloquium presentation per year

Preliminary exam (at least 15 weeks before dissertation defense)

Oral defense of Ph.D. dissertation

Approval of Ph.D. dissertation by the graduate committee

Ph.D. requires a minimum of 72 graduate hours, but at least 42 hours must be earned in formal coursework.

42 hours of formal graduate coursework including appropriate coursework from a master’s degree.

Additional credits toward the 72 credit hour requirement may include dissertation research hours, internship hours, or additional coursework.

24 in-residence coursework hours

Required Courses

These courses are required for both master’s and doctoral programs.

  • ATSC 5880: Ethics and Research Methods. 1.

  • ATSC 5001. Atmospheric Energetics. 2.

  • ATSC 5002. Atmospheric Radiation. 3.

  • ATSC 5003. Problems in Energetics and Radiation. 1.

  • ATSC 5100. Atmospheric Dynamics I. 3.

  • ATSC 5004. Problems in Dynamic Meteorology. 1.

  • ATSC 5005. Microphysics. 2.

  • ATSC 5006. Problems in Microphysics. 1.

  • ATSC 5160. Synoptic Meteorology. 2.

  • ATSC 5007. Problems in Synoptic Meteorology. 1.

  • ATSC 5008. Mesoscale Meteorology. 2.

  • ATSC 5020. Physical Meteorology Lab. 1.

  • ATSC 5210. Cloud and Precipitation Systems. 3.

  • UW Elective(s) to be determined by committee. 3 minimum

  • ATSC Elective(s). To be determined by committee. 3 minimum

 

Atmospheric Science (ATSC) Courses

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