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Researcher Investigates New Modeling Technology to Assess Climate Change Impact on Winter Storms

Noaastorm

STONY BROOK, NY, October 3, 2019 —  Winter storms result in substantial loss of life and property. Scientists are investigating how these extreme winter weather events that cause damage are influenced by climate change.

Edmund KM Chang, PhD, a Professor in the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences (SoMAS) at Stony Brook University, has received a two-year $200,000 grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Modeling, Analysis, Predictions and Projections program (NOAA/MAPP) to look more closely at the interactions between diabatic heating and storm dynamics to assess how warming temperatures will impact major snowstorms and winter floods.

Noaastorm
Image of a bomb cyclone that brought heavy snow and strong winds to the U.S. East coast during January 2018. Professor Chang’s research will explore how these cyclones and their impact will change in a warming world. Credit: NOAA

Recent studies have suggested that previous versions of Global Climate Models (GCMs) may not have sufficient resolution to correctly simulate the interactions between diabatic heating and storm dynamics, potentially under-estimating the intensity of these storms in future projections.

Professor Chang says his project will study these storms using, for the first time, multi-model ensemble projections that have resolution high enough to define and better simulate these interactions. He contends the results of the research will provide better understanding on how these hazards will change in the future.

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