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UW’s Liu Named Co-Chair of NCAR Working Group

March 8, 2016
man sitting at desk in front of a computer
Xiaohong Liu, a professor in the UW Department of Atmospheric Science and the Wyoming Excellence Chair in Climate Science, recently was named co-chair of NCAR’s Community Earth System Model Chemistry-Climate Working Group. (UW Photo)

Recognizing his contributions to an NCAR climate model, a University of Wyoming professor has been named co-chair of the national organization’s working group on climate science.

Xiaohong Liu, a professor in the UW Department of Atmospheric Science and the Wyoming Excellence Chair in Climate Science, has been named co-chair of the National Center for Atmospheric Research’s (NCAR) Community Earth System Model (CESM) Chemistry-Climate Working Group (CCWG).

“Being named co-chair of a CESM Working Group represents the significant contributions to the CESM model and recognition as one of the leading experts in the fields by peers,” Liu says. “My research group has strong collaborations with NCAR and made significant contributions to the development of CESM version 1, which was used in the IPCC AR5, and to the development of CESM version 2, which will be released to the public at the end of this year and used in IPCC AR6.”

The CESM is a widely used major climate model. It is an important tool for studying significant atmospheric and climate topics, such as atmospheric temperature change, drought/flooding, atmospheric circulation, air quality and visibility, snow/ice cover and biogeochemical cycles.

IPCC AR5 stands for the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report. The report provides an up-to-date view of the current state of scientific knowledge relevant to climate change.

CCWG’s goal is to continue developing the representation of chemical gas and aerosol species in the CESM, and to further understand the interactions between chemistry/aerosol and climate. Scientific motivations include advancing knowledge on past, present and future atmospheric composition; interactions between atmospheric composition and the Earth system; stratosphere-troposphere coupling; aerosol direct and indirect effects on the Earth's energy balance; aerosol effects on precipitation; and impacts of global chemistry/aerosol and climate on air quality.

Liu has received numerous awards and honors, including Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s Exceptional Contribution Program Award and Outstanding Performance Award; the World Meteorological Organization’s Young Scientist Award and its Mariolopoulos-Kanaginis Award (honorable mention) for papers in atmospheric environmental research; the Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow at Fraunhofer Institute for Atmospheric Environmental Research, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany; and was elected into the “100 Talent Program” of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Additionally, Liu has been listed in the Thomas Reuters’ Highly Cited Researchers for 2014 and 2015. The list represents some of the world’s most influential minds from 21 scientific fields.

Liu also leads a research project in which he uses the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center (NWSC) in Cheyenne. His project goal is to better understand the role of black carbon emitted by wildfires and mineral dust lofted into the atmosphere from arid regions on decadal climate variation. He says this ultimately will lead to better climate prediction capabilities.

He edits the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. He has served as a guest professor at Nanjing University in China, and the Institute of Atmospheric Physics at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing, China, where he advises doctoral students.

For more information about Liu, go here.

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