C3WE identifies and pursues societally-relevant, actionable science research into extremes across time scales. C3WE is embedded within NCAR’s MMM laboratory, extending the deep expertise in mesoscale processes and prediction, with a goal of advancing actionable science in weather and climate extremes. C3WE's strategic and sustained collaborations with private-public partnerships, as well as with the larger expertise across NCAR, enable C3WE/MMM to engage in cutting-edge and interdisciplinary research activities.

To meet C3WE's scientific goals, our fundamental science is framed around a set of high-level science questions.

  1. How do interactions between mesoscale and microscale processes and the large-scale environment drive extremes?
  2. What physical processes connect extremes in space and time, and how do these processes extend predictability?
  3. How do coupled Earth System processes enhance or suppress extremes?
  4. What are the leading causes of model deficiencies in simulating and predicting extreme events, and how can they be improved?
  5. How can contemporary Earth System observations better constrain models for the simulation of extremes?


Research Topics

Below is a list of general research topics / sub-topics C3WE typically works on. The staff members that work on these topics are indicated. 

Tropical Cyclones (TCs)
  -  TC characteristics that result in the greatest potential damage (Bruyère, Jaye, Done)
  -  TC storm surge (Ramos-Valle, Bruyère)
  -  Empirical relationships between TC frequency and climate indices (Prein, Done)
  -  Parametric wind and precipitation models (Done)
  -  Wave accumulation across the global tropics and its importance for TC genesis (Done)
  -  Weather types associated with TC genesis (Bruyère, Prein, Jaye)
  -  Understanding the fundamental drivers of TC development (Bruyère)
  -  Understanding the role of the changing vertical temperature profile (Done, Prein)
  -  Machine learning capabilities (Bruyère, Prein, Ramos-Valle)

Extreme Precipitation
  -  Impacts of melting level heights on precipitation phase and intensity (Prein)
  -  Extreme precipitation producing weather patterns (Prein, Towler, Ge, Bruyère, Done)
  -  Mesoscale convective systems across scales (Prein, Ramos-Valle)
  -  Hail (Prein)
  -  Atmospheric Rivers (Done, Swain)
  -  Model predictability of large-scale dynamics associated with extreme precipitation (Done)
  -  Process-level understanding of what connects extreme precipitation in time and space (Done, Ge, Towler, Swain)
  -  Understanding how connectivity influences practical predictability of extremes on S2S timescales (Done, Ge, Towler, Swain)
  -  Extreme precipitation characteristics and climate change (Prein, Swain)

Fire Weather
  -  Weather types that are related to extreme fire growth (Prein, Jaye)
  -  Extreme fire weather trends and climate change (Swain)

Workflows and Big Data
  -  Accelerating scientific workflows and time to science (Bruyère, Daniels)
  -  Making sense of the explosive increase in climate data through smart designs and big data methods (Bruyère, Prein, Done)

The Role of Decadal Climate Prediction for Water Resource and Flood Risk Management (Done, Ge, Towler)

Convection permitting modeling (Prein)

Streamflow and hydrology (Towler)

Model verification (Towler)

Structural vulnerability and fragility modeling (Smith)

Risk assessment for buildings in severe wind events (Smith)