Tapio Schneider

Theodore Y. Wu Professor of Environmental Science and Engineering; Jet Propulsion Laboratory Senior Research Scientist
Vordipl., Albert-Ludwigs-Universitat Freiburg, 1993; Ph.D., Princeton University, 2001. Assistant Professor, Caltech, 2002-08; Associate Professor, 2008-09; Professor, 2009-10; Gilloon Professor, 2010-18; Wu Professor, 2018-;Director, Linde Center, 2011-12; Executive Officer, 2011-12; Jet Propulsion Laboratory Senior Research Scientist, 2016-.


Basic climatic features such as the pole-to-equator surface temperature gradient, the atmospheric thermal stratification, and the distribution of atmospheric water vapor are controlled by atmospheric macroturbulence—turbulence with length scales of order 1000 km that is strongly affected by the planetary rotation. For example, the surface temperature gradient between pole and equator results from an interaction between differential heating of the Earth's surface (the equator is heated more strongly than the poles) and macroturbulent heat transport. My research, based on theoretical considerations, simulations with climate models of various complexity, and analyses of observational data, focuses on the development of theories of atmospheric macroturbulence and its influence on the global-scale climate. Such theories help us understand the changes in the atmospheric climate that occurred over the Earth's history and that are likely to occur in the future. They also help us understand the circulations of other planets, for example, the formation of jets on the giant planets.


Selected Publications 

Please see my research page for a complete list of publications including preprints.

Selected Publications

Kaspi, Y., and T. Schneider, 2011: Winter cold of eastern continental boundaries induced by warm ocean waters. Nature, 471, 621-624.

Schneider, T., P. A. O'Gorman, and X. J. Levine, 2010: Water vapor and the dynamics of climate changes. Reviews of Geophysics, 48, RG3001, doi:10.1029/2009RG000302.

O'Gorman, P. A., and T. Schneider, 2009: The physical basis for increases in precipitation extremes in simulations of 21st-century climate change. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106, 14773-14777.

Bordoni, S., and T. Schneider, 2008: Monsoons as eddy-mediated regime transitions of the tropical overturning circulation. Nature Geoscience, 1, 515-519.

Schneider, T., and S. Bordoni, 2008: Eddy-mediated regime transitions in the seasonal cycle of a Hadley circulation and implications for monsoon dynamics. Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 65, 915-934.

Schneider, T., 2007 and A.H. Sobel, Eds., 2007: The Global Circulation of the Atmosphere, Princeton University Press, 400 pp.

Schneider, T., 2006: The general circulation of the atmosphere. Annual Reviews of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 34, 655-688.

Walker, C. C., and T. Schneider, 2006: Eddy influences on Hadley circulations: Simulations with an idealized GCM. Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 63, 3333-3350.

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