Team Retreat in Payerbach, October 2021. Copyright © Behrooz Keshtgar.

All things clouds!

Via their interaction with radiation and their heating of the atmosphere, clouds are essential in shaping climate at both the global and regional scales. Thus, we believe that climate cannot be understood without understanding clouds.

We in particular study how clouds shape climate via their coupling to the circulation of the atmosphere, e.g., the tropical rain belts and the extratropical storm tracks. To this end, we actively develop and use hierarchies and ensembles of climate and atmosphere models.

Our interests in cloud processes means that we work on a broad range of time scales that include changes in the climatological circulation in response to anthropogenic climate change as well as the cloud impact on circulation on weather time scales, e.g., extratropical cyclones. We are also interested in understanding how clouds determine past extreme climates and the habitability of extrasolar Earth-like planets.