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CASPO Seminar: Dr. Scot Rafkin, "Everyone knows it’s Windy; Let’s put some numbers on that"

03/05/2019 - 3:30pm to 4:30pm
101 Nierenberg Hall
Event Description: 

Dr. Scot Rafkin

Southwest Research Institute


Wind is a fundamental property of the atmosphere, but synoptic, space-borne retrieval of atmospheric motion through the depth of the troposphere remains elusive.  The proposed MISTiC Winds mission will demonstrate a hyperspectral imaging technique for obtaining these long-desired wind data with unprecedented accuracy in wind speed, high spatial resolution, and most critically, accurate height assignment.  Using those same novel data, the MISTiC Wind experiment will investigate high impact weather phenomena in ways never before possible, and will validate the significant theoretical improvement that accurate kinematic information is thought to confer upon numerical weather forecasts.   This talk focuses on the application of MISTiC Winds to one of these phenomena: atmospheric rivers.  The value of frequent synoptic wind information to the detailed investigation of atmospheric river structure, evolution, and dynamics is described.  Particular attention is given to the larger scale atmospheric river system in which the core of the impactful event is embedded. This is followed by an overview of the MISTiC instrument and a description of the mission implementation that allows MISTiC Winds to achieve its science objectives.
Dr. Rafkin researches planetary atmospheres with a specialization in numerical weather prediction, mesoscale modeling, atmospheric dynamics, and cloud microphysics.  He has extensive experience developing weather and research modeling codes and has applied these to the study of mesoscale circulations, clouds, and aerosols for Earth and to other terrestrial planetary atmospheres including Mars, Titan, Venus, and Pluto.  Dr. Rafkin also develops and leads proposals for space instrumentation and missions for remote and in situ atmospheric measurements.  He holds a B.S. in Atmospheric Science from UCLA and a Ph.D. in Atmospheric Science from Colorado State University.  He is currently a Program Director at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado. 
For more information on this event, contact: 
Art Miller
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