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Atmospheric Science & Global Change

Staff information


Laura Riihimaki

Atmospheric Measurement & Data Sciences
Earth Scientist
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
PO Box 999
MSIN: K9-24
Richland, WA 99352

Research Interests

  • Atmospheric remote sensing and radiative transfer
  • Tropical cloud formation and properties
  • Solar energy resource assessment

Education and Credentials

  • PhD Physics, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR, 2008
  • BS Physics, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL, 2001

Affiliations and Professional Service

  • American Geophysical Union
  • American Meteorological Society

PNNL Publications


  • Kassianov E.I., E.A. Riley, J. Kleiss, C.N. Long, L.D. Riihimaki, D.M. Flynn, and C.M. Flynn, et al. 2017. "Macrophysical properties of continental cumulus clouds from active and passive remote sensing." In Remote Sensing of Clouds and the Atmosphere XXII, September 11-14, 2017, Warsaw, Poland. Proceedings of the SPIE, edited by A Comeron, EI Kassianov and K Schafer, 10424, Paper No.104240A. Bellingham, Washington:SPIE. PNNL-SA-128406. doi:10.1117/12.2278029
  • Kassianov E.I., J.C. Barnard, C.M. Flynn, L.D. Riihimaki, L.K. Berg, and D.A. Rutan. 2017. "Areal-Averaged Spectral Surface Albedo in an Atlanic Coastal Area: Estimation from Ground-Based Transmission." Atmosphere 8, no. 7:123. PNNL-SA-124561. doi:10.3390/atmos8070123
  • Kassianov E.I., M.S. Pekour, C.J. Flynn, L.K. Berg, J. Beranek, A. Zelenyuk, and C. Zhao, et al. 2017. "Large Contribution of Coarse Mode to Aerosol Microphysical and Optical Properties: Evidence from Ground-based Observations of a Transpacific Dust Outbreak at a High-Elevation North American Site." Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences 74, no. 5:1431-1443. PNNL-SA-118075. doi:10.1175/JAS-D-16-0256.1
  • Riihimaki L.D., J.M. Comstock, E. Luke, T.J. Thorsen, and Q. Fu. 2017. "A case study of microphysical structures and hydrometeor phase in convection using radar Doppler spectra at Darwin, Australia." Geophysical Research Letters 44, no. 14:7519-7527. PNNL-SA-125513. doi:10.1002/2017GL074187


  • Lim K., L.D. Riihimaki, J.M. Comstock, B. Schmid, C. Sivaraman, Y. Shi, and G. McFarquhar. 2016. "Evalution of long-term surface-retrieved cloud-droplet number concentration with in situ aircraft observations." Journal of Geophysical Research. D. (Atmospheres) 121, no. 5:23182331. PNNL-SA-111765. doi:10.1002/2015JD024082
  • Riihimaki L.D., J.M. Comstock, K.K. Anderson, A.E. Holmes, and E. Luke. 2016. "A Path towards uncertainty assignment in an operational cloud phase algorithm from ARM vertically pointing active sensors." Advances in Statistical Climatology Meteorology and Oceanography 2, no. 1:49-62. PNNL-SA-112801. doi:10.5194/ascmo-2-49-2016


  • Berg L.K., L.D. Riihimaki, Y. Qian, H. Yan, and M. Huang. 2015. "The Low-Level Jet over the Southern Great Plains Determined from Observations and Reanalyses and Its Impact on Moisture Transport." Journal of Climate 28, no. 17:6682-6706. PNNL-SA-105597. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-14-00719.1
  • Kassianov E.I., J.C. Barnard, C.J. Flynn, L.D. Riihimaki, and M.C. Marinovici. 2015. "How Well Can We Estimate Areal-Averaged Spectral Surface Albedo from Ground-Based Transmission in an Atlantic Coastal Area?." In Remote Sensing of Clouds and the Atmosphere XX, September 21, 2015, Toulouse, France. Proceedings of the SPIE, edited by A Comeron, EI Kassianov and K Schafer, 9640, Paper No. 96400K. Bellingham, Washington:SPIE. PNNL-SA-112719. doi:10.1117/12.2196875


  • Kassianov E.I., J.C. Barnard, C.J. Flynn, L.D. Riihimaki, J. Michalsky, and G.B. Hodges. 2014. "Areal-averaged and Spectrally-resolved Surface Albedo from Ground-based Transmission Data Alone: Toward an Operational Retrieval." Atmosphere 5, no. 3:597-621. PNNL-SA-103422. doi:10.3390/atmos5030597
  • Kassianov E.I., J.C. Barnard, C.J. Flynn, L.D. Riihimaki, J. Michalsky, and G.B. Hodges. 2014. "Retrieval of Areal-averaged Spectral Surface Albedo from Transmission Data Alone: Computationally Simple and Fast Approach." In SPIE Remote Sensing of Clouds and the Atmosphere XIX, edited by Adolfo Comeron, 9242, 6 pages. Amsterdam:SPIE Proceedings. PNNL-SA-104307. doi:10.1117/12.2070282
  • Riihimaki L.D., and C.N. Long. 2014. "Spatial Variability of Surface Irradiance Measurements at the Manus ARM Site." Journal of Geophysical Research. D. (Atmospheres) 119, no. 9:54755491. PNNL-SA-99239. doi:10.1002/2013JD021187


  • Stephan E.G., T.O. Elsethagen, K. Kleese van Dam, and L.D. Riihimaki. 2013. "What Comes First, the OWL or the Bean? Creating Reusable Scientific Software with OWL/RDF Vocabularies." In First Workshop on Sustainable Software for Science: Practice and Experiences (WSSSPE1), November 17, 2013, Denver, Colorado. Manchester:WSSSPE. PNNL-SA-98167.


  • Riihimaki L.D., K.L. Gaustad, and S.A. McFarlane. 2012. Climate Science for a Sustainable Energy Future Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Best Estimate (CSSEFARMBE). PNNL-21831. Richland, WA: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
  • Riihimaki L.D., S.A. McFarlane, and J.M. Comstock. 2012. "Climatology and Formation of Tropical Midlevel Clouds at the Darwin ARM Site." Journal of Climate 25, no. 19:6835-6850. PNNL-SA-82527. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-11-00599.1
  • Riihimaki L.D., S.A. McFarlane, C. Liang, S.T. Massie, N. Beagley, and T.D. Toth. 2012. "Comparison of Methods to Determine Tropical Tropopause Layer Cirrus Formation Mechanisms." Journal of Geophysical Research. D. (Atmospheres) 117. PNNL-SA-82203. doi:10.1029/2011JD016832


  • Riihimaki L.D., and S.A. McFarlane. 2010. "Frequency and morphology of tropical tropopause layer cirrus from CALIPSO observations: Are isolated cirrus different from those connected to deep convection?." Journal of Geophysical Research. D. (Atmospheres) 115. PNNL-SA-68174. doi:10.1029/2009JD013133


  • Riihimaki L.D., F. Vignola, and C.N. Long. 2009. "Analyzing the Contribution of Aerosols to an Observed Increase in Direct Normal Irradiance in Oregon." Journal of Geophysical Research. D. (Atmospheres) 114. PNNL-SA-63742. doi:10.1029/2008JD010970

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