Rainstorms are ubiquitous in Earth’s atmosphere, and different types of rainstorms have their own characteristic spatial scales. For example, the typical spatial scale of hurricanes is about 1000 km, neither 100 km nor 10,000 km. What environmental factors determine the spatial scale of different types of rainstorms? How will their spatial scales change in a warmer climate? These questions are long-term mysteries in atmospheric science, and this knowledge gap, in part, results from conventional theories either focusing on fluid dynamics or thermodynamics in isolation. By integrating both aspects, I aim to develop a quantitative and unified theory of rainstorms. The new theory will help make accurate, physics-based predictions of how rainstorms will change in future climates.

Awards and Achievements

  • Miller Research Fellow ( 2014 - 2017)