Physical Sciences Division

The ESRL Physical Sciences Division (PSD) conducts weather and climate research to observe and understand Earth's physical environment, and to improve weather and climate predictions on global-to-local scales.

Research Highlights

El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO)
Information and resources about El Niño and La Niña, as well as some current PSD research topics.
El Niño Rapid Response Field Campaign
An unprecedented field campaign in to study El Niño while the event was ongoing.
CA Medium-Range Precipitation Forecasts
An experimental forecast product to provide reliable and skillful probabilistic forecast guidance for extreme rainfall over California.
Research for Renewable Energy
Field programs and scientific analysis to improve weather forecasting models, which contributes to more efficient integration of alternative power sources.
AR animation Atmospheric Rivers
Narrow corridors of concentrated moisture in the atmosphere that can produce dangerous storms when striking land.
Interpreting Climate Conditions
Explaining evolving climate conditions and assessing their impacts, particularly at regional or local levels.
arctic Arctic Climate Observations
Understanding the mechanisms that control the changing Arctic climate through detailed observations.
hurricane Ocean Climate Observations
PSD's Air-Sea flux system is deployed on a variety of oceanic research cruises each year to measure interactions between the ocean and atmosphere.
dustbowl 20th Century Reanalysis
A global atmospheric dataset spanning 1851 to 2012 to place current atmospheric patterns into a historical perspective.
hurricane Improving Hurricane Intensity Forecasts
Atmospheric observations, laboratory experiments & computer modeling studies to improve measurements of air-sea processes under hurricane conditions.