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Welcome to the Department of Atmospheric Science

at Colorado State University

Our top-rated department focuses on graduate education, cutting-edge research, and public service. We currently have 15 faculty members, nearly one hundred graduate students, approximately 50 full-time researchers, and an outstanding and dedicated support staff. Our diverse areas of research include Cloud Microphysics, Severe Storms and Mesoscale Meteorology, Atmospheric Chemistry and Air Quality, Radiation and Remote Sensing, Climate and Atmosphere-Ocean Dynamics, and Global Biogeochemical Cycles and Ecosystems. We offer graduate degrees at both the M.S. and Ph.D. levels. The department was founded in 1962 by renowned tropical meteorologist Herbert Riehl and recently celebrated its 50th anniversary.

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History of the Department of Atmospheric Science



F-101B Used For Severe Storm Research

Around 1974, Colorado State University operated an F-101B aircraft as shown in this image. During its time under CSU control, the aircraft carried the civilian serial number N8234 and the nickname, ‘the grey ghost’. This aircraft was used to study severe storms under the direction of Professor Peter Sinclair of the Department of Atmospheric Science. During the program, it was based at the Buckley Air National Guard Base in Denver.

CSU contracted with Flight Test Research, Inc., of California who provided an experienced test pilot named Jim Lucy. Dr. Sinclair rode in the back seat running the instrumentation after selecting the storm to be penetrated. Most flights were made over northern Colorado and western Nebraska in thunderheads of 35,000 to 45,000 feet where the plane encountered high turbulence, lightning, and hail.

The plane was nicknamed "The Gray Ghost: which became its call sign. The CSU F-101 was returned to the Air Force and is now located at the Air Museum in Topeka, Kansas."


New Students

Welcome Fall 2016 Students

Jennifer Bukowski Ting-yu Cha
Michael Cheeseman Kyle Chudler
Luke Davis Kyle Nardi
Michael Natoli Katelyn O'Dell
Emily Ramnarine Bryn Ronalds
Benjamin Toms Benjamin Trabing
Kai-Chih Tseng Jungmin Park

              Ph.D. Defense
Ali Boris
Location: ATS Large Classroom (ATS 101)
Date: June 8, 12:00 pm
Advisor: Jeff Collett

December 2015
December 2014
December 2013

We are taking a break during the summer - see you back in the fall!

View current & past Café details...

Temp: 58°F ( 15°C)
Dewpoint: 39°F ( 4°C)
Relative Humidity: 49%
Wind Speed: 4 mph, gusts 6 mph
(6 km/h, gusts 10 km/h)
Wind Direction:
Pressure: 844 hPa ( 24.95 in)

Last Updated: 26 May 2016. Contact the Webmaster