Cloud Microphysics and Dynamics

Atmospheric Science

Aircraft on icy tarmac
The UWKA taxiing on an icy tarmac prior to a SNOWIE mission.
radar observations
Example of WCR observations of a snowstorm over complex terrain, from top to bottom reflectivity, (hydrometeor) vertical velocity, and along-track wind. The UWKA flight track is the dashed line near 4.3 km MSL in the top panel.


Physics and dynamics of clouds is a cornerstone of the department and remains a key area of research among much of its faculty. The objective of much of this work is to better understand cloud microphysical processes through observation (FrenchGeerts and Saito) and to improve the representation of these processes in numerical models (McCoy) from the cloud scale to the global scale. Feedbacks between cloud dynamics and microphysics are investigated through the use of the Wyoming Cloud Radar (Geerts and French) and Lidar (Saito) and can be further studied through detailed in situ measurements from the Wyoming King Air (French and Geerts).

Some investigations focus on aerosol-cloud-hydrometeor interactions and feedbacks (McCoy), while others may be concerned with the natural development of precipitation in clouds through warm and/or cold processes. Questions regarding the efficacy of and processes through which cloud seeding may affect the natural evolution of clouds are being addressed through current research projects (French and Geerts). Likewise, understanding of systematic differences of cloud characteristics depending on cloud type, location, and temperature (McCoy and Saito) are key to addressing climate feedbacks.


Contact Us

University of Wyoming,

Atmospheric Science,

EN 6034

Dept. 3038

1000 E. University Ave.

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307)766-3245


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