Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program and ARM Climate Research Facility
The Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and is managed through the Office of Science as a multi-laboratory, interagency program. It is a key contributor to national and international research efforts related to global climate change, with a primary program objective of improving scientific understanding of the fundamental physics related to interactions between clouds and radiative feedback processes in the atmosphere. ARM focuses on obtaining continuous field measurements and providing data products that promote the advancement of climate models.
Scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory play a key role in achieving ARM's programmatic objectives by addressing the following scientific questions:
- What are the effects of atmospheric constituents, particularly clouds, water vapor, and aerosols on the radiative flow of energy through the atmosphere and across the Earth's surface?
- What is the nature of the variability of radiation and the radiative properties of the atmosphere on climatically relevant space and time scales?
- What are the primary interactions among the various dynamic, thermodynamic, and radiative processes that determine the radiative properties of an atmospheric column, including clouds and the underlying surface?
- How do radiative processes interact with dynamical and hydrologic processes to produce cloud feedbacks that regulate climate change?
In addition, the ARM Climate Research Facility (a DOE Office of Science national user facility) provides the opportunity for scientists from around the world to conduct research in a wide range of interdisciplinary earth sciences using the infrastructure established through the ARM Program. Science and engineering staff at PNNL are key contributors to the management and operations of this user facility, from instrument development and installation to process controls and information management.
Contact: Jim Mather