Climate and Environmental Systems


Since the 1960s, cutting-edge research related to climate and climate change has been carried by a number of scientists at the University at Albany, SUNY, including its Atmospheric Sciences Research Center (ASRC). With a number of recent new hires, the Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences (DAES) is rapidly expanding into climate science. The following is a list of faculty members whose research is directly related to climate variability and climate change. Their expertise includes:

1) tropical climate variability and hurricanes, 2) African monsoon, 3) regional and global climate changes, 4) hydroclimate and the global water cycle, 5) radiation and remote sensing, 5) land-air and air-sea interactions, 6) aerosol-climate interactions, 6) climate observations and data analysis, and 7) weather and climate interactions.

We encourage prospective students to contact the individual scientists for applying to the graduate program in DAES.

Description: Dai_Wang_NCAR_June2011 Aiguo Dai, Associate Professor; PhD, Columbia University, 1996. Email:, phone: (518) 442-4474.
Research interests: Global and regional climate changes, future climate projections, the global water cycle, hydroclimate changes, drought, and climate data analysis.
Notables: Dr. Dai is well-known for his work on precipitation, streamflow, drought, model evaluation, and the diurnal cycle. As of 10/2012, Dr. Dai chairs the Committee on Climate Variability and Change of the American Meteorological Society, and serves as an Editor of the Journal of Climate. He published about 80 peer-reviewed journal articles with total citations over 6500 and an H-index of 41 based on Google Scholar(4500 and 36 based on Web of Science).
Description: jliu.jpg Jiping Liu, Assistant Professor; PhD, Columbia University, 2003. Email:, phone: (518) 437-8799.
Research interests: Climate-Cryosphere Dynamics, Feedbacks and Modeling, Atmosphere-Ice-Ocean Interactions, Application of Remote Sensing in Climate.
Notables: Dr. Liu has made substantial contributions to understanding sea ice variability and its role in climate dynamics.

Description: miller_pic3.jpg Scott Miller, Research Associate, ASRC; PhD, University of California, Irvine, 1998. Email:, phone: (518) 437-8799.
Research interests: Micrometeorology, exchange of momentum, heat, and trace gases (e.g., carbon dioxide) between the atmosphere and earth's surface.
Notables: Dr. Miller has extensive field experience measuring atmospheric turbulence and fluxes from towers, small boats (lakes and rivers), and research ships. He has served on the editorial board of Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, and is a member of the advisory group for the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON).

Qilong Min, Research Associate and Professor, ASRC; PhD, Univ of Alaska, Fairbanks, 1993. Email:, phone: (518) 437-8742.
Research interests: Radiative transfer, remote sensing, instrument development, aerosol-cloud-precipitation interaction, and atmosphere-terrestrial ecosystem exchange
Notables: Dr. Min is well-known for his work on remote sensing. He participated in multiple NASA missions and led oxygen A-band retrieval efforts for CloudSat PABSI.
Description: Justin Minder Justin Minder, Assistant Professor; PhD, Univ. of Washington, 2010. Email:, phone: (518) 437-3732.
Research interests: Mountain weather and climate, regional climate & climate change, mesoscale dynamics & modeling, hydrometeorology.
Notables: Dr. Minder's work synthesizes field observations, theory, and numerical modeling. He was a Richard Foster Flint postdoctoral fellow at Yale University from 2010-2012. He has played a major role in field projects that include: DOMEX (Dominica, Caribbean, 2011), and the Olympic Mountain Rainfall Climatology (Washington, USA, 2004-2010).
Description: Paul Roundy Paul Roundy, Associate Professor; PhD, Penn State University, 2003. Email:, phone: (518) 442-4476.
Research interests: Dr. Roundy studies convection organized on large spatial scales in the tropics, associated with atmospheric and oceanic waves and climate modes such as the El Nino/Southern Oscillation (ENSO). He studies different mechanisms whereby global climate signals can interact with the weather in the tropics and around the globe to feed back on the climate system. He also analyzes associations between organized convection in the tropics and the global atmospheric circulation.
Notables: Professor Roundy serves as an Editor for Monthly Weather Review. He also forges connections with private industry and facilitates transfer of research results at the boundary between weather and climate into the hands of those who might benefit in the public and private sectors.
Description: Brian picture Brian Tang, Assistant Professor; PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2010. Email:, phone (518) 442-4572.
Research interests: Tropical meteorology and climate, mesoscale dynamics, synoptic meteorology, and weather-climate interactions
Notables: Dr. Tang is interested in the seasonal variability of tropical disturbances and the two-way interaction between tropical cyclones and the general circulation. He received the Max Eaton Prize in 2008 for his work on the ventilation of tropical cyclones and was the Joanne and Bob Simpson Postdoctoral Fellow at the National Center for Atmospheric Research from 2010-2012.
Description: Image Chris Thorncroft, Professor, Department Chair; PhD, Univ. of Reading, UK, 1989. Email:, phone: (518) 442-4555.
Research Interests: Tropical meteorology, tropical waves and the West African monsoon, and African weather and climate impacts on hurricanes.
Notables: Dr. Thorncroft is a well-known expert on the West African monsoon and African easterly waves.
Mathias Vuille, Associate Professor; PhD, University of Bern (Switzerland), 1995. Email:, phone (518) 442-4472.
Research interests: Climate variability and climate change in tropical South America and East Africa, tropical glacier-climate interactions, tropical paleoclimatology.
Notables: Dr. Vuille is a Senior Fellow in the U.S. State Department’s Energy and Climate Program (ECPA) and serves on the U.S. Committee for the International Union of Quaternary Research (INQUA). He collaborates with the UNESCO International Hydrologic Program on climate change adaptation in the Andes.
Junhong (June) Wang Research Associate Professor; PhD, Columbia University, 1997. Email:, phone (518) 442-3478.
Research interests: Climate observations, climate changes and variability, the global water cycle, climate data creation and analysis, Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) measurements and applications, and sounding technology and data quality.
Notables: Dr. Wang is a lead expert on atmospheric sounding technology and GPS meteorology. She has actively involved in instigating, planning and implementing GCOS (Global Climate Observing System) Reference Upper Air Network (GRUAN) since 2006. She served as an Editor of J. Atmos. Oceanic Tech, and published about 40 peer-reviewed journal articles.
Description: Wei-Chyung Wang Wei-Chyung Wang, Professor of Applied Sciences, ASRC; DESc, Columbia University 1973. Email:, phone: (518) 437-8708.
Research Interests: Global and regional model study of climate-chemistry interactions involving atmospheric greenhouse gases and ozone, and aerosol-cloud-precipitation-climate interactions. Analyses of 2,000-years of proxy climate data in China to study climate extremes and their causes.
Notables: Dr. Wang has been serving as the U.S. Chief Scientist for the "Climate Sciences" agreement between the U. S. Department of Energy and the China's Ministry of Sciences and Technology. He has over 150 refereed publications in more than thirty journals including Science and Nature. He is a member of Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters, and was awarded by SUNY-Albany in 1994 for Excellence in Research and by European Physical Society/Balkan Physical Union in 2002 for Scientific Achievements in Environmental Physics.
Fangqun Yu, Research Associate and Professor, ASRC; PhD, UCLA, 1998. Email:, phone: (518) 437-8767.
Research interests: Aerosol direct/indirect radiative forcing, aerosol modeling and comparisons with observations, climate feedback mechanisms.
Notables: Dr. Yu is well-known for his development of the ion-mediated nucleation theory and an advanced particle microphysics model, which have been incorporated into widely used community models such as GEOS-Chem, WRF-Chem, and CAM5. He has actively involved in the AEROCOM-project, an open international initiative of scientists interested in the advancement of the understanding of the global aerosol and its impact on climate. He serves as an Editor of Atmos. Chem. Phys., and published about 85 peer-reviewed journal articles.
Description: Image Liming Zhou, Associate Professor; PhD, Boston University, 2002. Email:, phone (518) 442-4446.
Research interests: Land surface remote sensing, land surface modeling, land-human-climate interactions, climate impact of wind farms.
Notables: I have >50 peer-reviewed journal articles with total citations of 3335 and an H-index of 28 based on Google Scholar. I have been active in professional service activities as an NSF's Program Director of Climate and Large-scale Dynamics from 2008-2011 and as a reviewer for >20 leading geophysical journals and for NSF and NASA proposals.