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Courses in Climate Science


The following courses in climate science and closely related fields will be offered during the indicated semesters. Students satisfying the prerequisites may enroll in individual courses of their choice, or follow the more comprehensive program, Pathway for studying the Mathematics of Climate Change.

Math 396 CL. Introduction to Mathematical Climate Science. Prerequisites: Math 250 and Math 280 or Math 351, or Permission of the Instructors. This course in applied mathematics will introduce students to applications of vector calculus and differential equations to the study of global climate. Fundamental equations governing atmospheric dynamics will be derived and solved for a variety of situations. Topics include: thermodynamics of the atmosphere, potential temperature, parcel concepts, hydrostatic balance, dynamics of air motion and wind flows, energy balance, an introduction to radiative transfer, and elementary mathematical climate models. Offered Fall 2012.

Math 483. Mathematical Modeling. Prerequisites: Math 340 and Math 351, or Permission of the Instructors. Possible topics include fundamental principles of atmospheric radiation and convection, two dimensional models, varying parameters within models, numerical simulation of atmospheric fluid flow from both a theoretical and applied setting. Offered Spring 2013.

Phys 595 CL. Mathematics and Physics of Climate Change. Prerequisite: Permission of the Instructors. Atmospheric dynamics and thermodynamics, radiation and radiative transfer, green-house effect, mathematics of remote sounding, introduction to atmospheric and climate modeling. Math graduate students may take this course as a graduate math elective or substitute it for Math 625. Offered Spring 2012, Fall 2013.

Geog 407/L. Remote Sensing and Lab. Problem oriented course emphasizing techniques and application on imagery recorded in different regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Includes infrared, near infrared and microwave from aircraft and satellite platforms. Two hours lecture, two hours lab. Offered Fall 2011, 2012, 2013.

Geog 416. Global Warming. Analysis of Earth's changing climate throughout geologic time. Includes consideration of the mechanisms of climate change, techniques of climate reconstruction and analysis, and the chronology of climate change. Examines the issue of global warming, climate data, climate models and predictions. Considers the environmental impact of global warming. Offered Fall 2012.

Geog 690D. Graduate Seminar in Remote Sensing. This course examines how the earth and its atmosphere can be viewed from aircraft and satellites using different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum, and how the images obtained can be analyzed to provide information on land use and features of the earth's surface. This is an advanced course in remote sensing. Students will learn the principles and practice of remote sensing, and gain hands-on experience in image analysis using ERDAS Imagine, a sophisticated image processing software package through assignments and projects. Offered Spring 2012, 2013.

Geog 620F. Graduate Seminar in Climate Change. This course educates students about the climate of the Earth and the processes that shape its evolution. Global warming refers to contemporary changes to the surface temperature of the Earth which are occurring in large part due to changes in the carbon dioxide content of the atmosphere as a result of our consumption of fossil fuels. Students will examine the science behind this and look at predictions for the future. They will learn about current legislation for limiting carbon emissions, and how carbon emissions ('footprints') are determined. There will be a significant laboratory component to this course in which students will gain hands-on experience in analyzing and mapping the evidence for climate change, the effects of climate change on the environment and energy resources.

 


 

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