Last Updated: Tue Mar 28 13:06:51 MDT 2017

   David D. Turner, Ph.D.
      Global Systems Division
      Earth System Research Laboratory
      Email: dave.turner (at)
      Voice: 303-497-6097
      ResearcherID E-5180-2016, ORCID 0000-0003-1097-897X


Curriculum Vitae


  • Ph.D. Atmospheric Science 2003, University of Wisconsin - Madison, Madison, Wisconsin
  • M.S. Mathematics 1994, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Washington
  • B.A. Mathematics 1992, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Washington

  • Oct 2016
  • -Current Meteorologist, Global Systems Division, Earth System Research Laboratory, NOAA
  • Aug 2011
  • -Current Adjunct Professor, School of Meteorology, University of Oklahoma
  • Feb 2013
  • -Current Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Mesoscale Studies (CIMMS) Federal Associate, University of Oklahoma
  • Aug 2010
  • -Sep 2016 Meteorologist, Forecast Research and Development Division, National Severe Storms Laboratory, NOAA
  • Aug 2009
  • -Aug 2012 Assistant Professor, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin - Madison
  • Jun 2007
  • -Jul 2007 Guest Professor, Institute of Geophysics and Meteorology, University of Cologne
  • Aug 2005
  • -Jul 2009 Research Scientist, Space Science and Engineering Center, University of Wisconsin - Madison
  • Jul 2003
  • -Jul 2005 Senior Research Scientist, Climate Physics Group, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
  • Sep 2000
  • -Jun 2003 Graduate Research Assistant, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin - Madison
  • Jul 1994
  • -Aug 2003 Research Scientist I and II, Information Sciences and Engineering Group, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Professional Activities
  • Member, American Meteorological Society (AMS), 1998 - present
  • Member, American Geophysical Union, 2003 - present
  • Chair, DOE Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) User Executive Committee, 2015 - present
  • Principal Investigator, DOE Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program, which became the Atmospheric System Research (ASR) program, 2005 - present
  • Member, ARM / ASR Science and Infrastructure Steering Committee (SISC), 2007 - present
  • Co-chair, ASR Cloud-Aerosol-Precipitation Interactions Working Group, 2010 - 2013
  • Member, International Scientific Steering Committee for the Convective and Orographic Precipitation Study (COPS), 2006 - 2011
  • Chair, ARM Climate Research Facility Science Board, 2009 - 2011
  • Associate Editor, AMS Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology, 2006 - 2011
  • Member, USGCRP Water Cycle Science Steering Group, 2006 - 2010
  • Chair, ARM Radiative Processes Working Group, 2007 - 2010
  • Co-chair, ARM Clouds with Low Optical (Water) Depth [CLOWD] Working Group, 2004 - 2010
  • ARM AERI Instrument Mentor, 2006 - 2009
  • ARM Raman Lidar Instrument Mentor, 2003 - 2008
  • Member, NSF Committee for the NCAR Facilities Assessment of Solar Measurements, 2006 - 2007
  • Member, AMS Committee on Laser Atmospheric Studies (CLAS), 2003 - 2006
  • General Chair, OSA Hyperspectral Imaging and Sounding of the Environment Topical Meeting, 2005
  • Developed a high-spectral-resolution radiative transfer model that includes scattering (LBLDIS), used by at least 25 users in 17 different institutions
  • Field Campaign Leadership
    • Co-PI, NSF Collaborative Research: Integrated Characterization of Energy, Clouds, Atmospheric State, and Precipitation over Summit (ICECAPS), June 2010 - June 2018
    • Co-PI, NSF Plains Elevated Convection at Night (PECAN), June - July 2015
    • PI, Lower Atmospheric Boundary Layer Experiment (LABLE): #1 in Sep-Nov 2012, #2 in May-June 2013
    • Co-PI, SGP Humidity Experiment (HUMEX-I), Jul-Aug 2011
    • PI, Inner Domain Thermodynamic Profiling during MC3E (IDT Profiling), Apr-Jun 2011
    • PI, ARM Radiative Heating in Underexplored Bands Campaign (RHUBC-II), Aug-Oct 2009
    • Co-I, ARM Routine AVP CLOWD Optical Radiative Observations (RACORO), Jan-Jun 2009
    • Co-I, ARM Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC), Apr 2008
    • Co-I, ARM Convective and Orographic Precipitation Study (COPS), Apr-Dec 2007
    • PI, ARM Radiative Heating in Underexplored Bands Campaign (RHUBC-I), Feb-Mar 2007
    • PI, PNNL Lexington-A Campaign to Investigate Solar Scattering and Emission in 3-5 um band, 2005
    • Co-I, ARM Aerosol Lidar Validation Experiment (ALIVE), 2005
    • Co-I, ARM Mixed-Phase Arctic Cloud Experiment (M-PACE), 2004
    • Co-I, ARM Water Vapor Experiments (WVIOPs) in 1997, 1999, 2000

    I am a physical scientist in the Global Systems Division in the Earth System Research Laboratory. I am also affiliated with the University of Oklahoma's School of Meteorology, where I am an adjunct professor.

    The focus of my research at NOAA is to better understand various processes that act upon and within the boundary layer (e.g., convective initiation, turbulent redistribution of water vapor, aerosol, and energy, etc) so that these processes are better represented within numerical weather prediction and climate models. Part of this work includes continuing to develop and mature different ground-based profiling technologies (both active lidar and passive multi-frequency infrared and microwave sensing techniques) to measure the temperature and humidity structure of the boundary layer, and using these observations to gain insight into how well NWP models (such as the rapid refresh models RAP and HRRR which are developed in GSD) are representing atmospheric processes and evolution.

    I am intricately involved with the Department of Energy's Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) and Atmospheric Systems Research (ASR) programs. ARM and ASR together compose the infrastructure and science team for the largest observational-based climate research program within the DOE. I am a principal investigator in these programs, have served as the chair of the ARM User Executive Committee and the ARM Climate Research Facility Science Board. I am also a co-PI of a large, multi-year project called ICECAPS that is funded by the National Science Foundation to collect a long-term, ground-based dataset to characterize the atmospheric state, cloud properties, and radiation above Summit, Greenland. I have been a member of the US Global Change Research Program's (USGCRP) Water Cycle Science Steering Group, and have participated in a number of other steering committees and community activites.

    Science relies on observations to develop theories about nature, and ultimately to evaluate and validate these theories. These observations come from our natural senses and from instruments that we have developed. The sustained development of advanced instrumentation continues to open new horizons in our understanding about how nature, including the multitude of processes in our atmosphere, really operates. In fact, instrument development and scientific advancement typically progress hand-in-hand.

    I am an observationalist and an atmospheric physicist, and a budding modeler. I use a wide variety of in-situ and remote sensing techniques to characterize, understand, and quantify processes that occur in the atmosphere. Improving our understanding of these processes, and how they interact with each other and the environment, is critically important to improving our ability to represent these processes in models (both numerical weather prediction and climate models). In particular, I have worked with state-of-the-art remote sensors such as an automated water vapor and aerosol Raman lidar, Doppler lidar, Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer, multi-frequency microwave radiometer, and millimeter-wave cloud radar in my research. These instruments provide a unique view of a broad range of atmospheric phenomenon.

    I utilize observations from these and other more traditional instruments, typically in synergistic fashion, to gain insight into such topics as evolution of the boundary layer's turbulent structure; shallow convective cloud processes; the interaction between clouds, aerosols, radiation, precipitation, and the thermodynamic environment in the boundary layer; mixed-phase clouds; radiative transfer in the atmosphere; and other topics. Numerical models, such as those used for climate and weather prediction, have large uncertainties in all of these areas, and it is my objective to use these observations to improve our understanding and representation of these processes.

    Another scientific field that I am extremely interested in advances simultaneously with instrument development and atmospheric science: retrieval theory. It is very seldom that an instrument measures exactly the geophysical variable that is desired; more often it observes something else (e.g., a voltage) that is related to your desired variable. Thus, our community uses retrieval algorithms to essentially invert what we observe into what we ultimately desire.

    Retrieval scientists, such as myself, utilize data from several instruments that offer complementary information about the geophysical variables that are desired, and develop techniques that are able to quantify the information content of the observations. Furthermore, the accurate specification of the uncertainties in the retrieved geophysical variables is a challenging, yet critical, aspect of retrieval science and is vitally important for using these derived variables to drive and evaluate atmospheric models. I believe that the study of retrieval theory is essential and just as important as developing new instruments or parameterizations of atmospheric processes.