Cloud Processes Research Group

Susan C. van den Heever

Monfort Professor

For Sue van den Heever's webpage and biosketch click here

Who we are

The van den Heever Group: From left to right: (Top row) Nick Falk, Yasutaka Murakami, Ross Heikes, Aryeh Drager, Sue van den Heever, Emily Riley Dellaripa, Alex Sokolowsky, Steve Saleeby, Peter Marinescu, Sean Freeman. (Bottom row) Bowen Pan, Leah Grant, Jennie Bukowski, Jungmin (Minnie) Park, Kristen Van Valkenburg
The van den Heever Group, staying together through quarantine: From left to right: (Top row) Sue van den Heever, Kristen Van Valkenburg, Emily Riley Dellaripa, Nick Falk, Leah Grant; (Middle row) Steve Saleeby, Jungmin (Minnie) Park, Brianna Lund, Sean Freeman, Yasutaka Murakami; (Bottom row) Jennie Bukowski, Alex Sokolowsky, Bowen Pan, Aryeh Drager, Gabrielle (Bee) Leung.

Hello and welcome to the research group of Professor Sue van den Heever. Our research focuses on cloud processes, specifically the microphysical and dynamical characteristics of deep convective cloud systems, aerosol-cloud feedbacks, convective organization and the representation of these processes in numerical models. More detailed information on the scientific questions we are currently addressing can be found on our research webpage and from our publications. We utilize numerical models to achieve our scientific goals, in particular the open source Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS) that is developed and maintained by the van den Heever research group. We also draw on satellite and radar observations in our research, and numerous members of our research group have participated in a number of field campaigns. Our group, together with students from the Schumacher, Schubert, Rasmussen and Rutledge groups, recently completed C3LOUD-Ex, a field campaign to investigate updraft and cold pool characteristics of convective storms over NE Colorado. The field campaign utilized drones, radiosondes and radar data from the CSU-CHILL facility to address the campaign science goals and was recently described in the Colorado State University Magazine and on SOURCE. Several of our group also recently participated in NASA's CAMP2Ex held in the region of Philippines. More details about our CAMP2Ex activities were recently featured in SOURCE.

Recent News


May 15: Despite the lack of in-person commencement, the Department is still celebrating our Spring and Summer 2020 graduates, including Dr. Aryeh Drager, Dr. Peter Marinescu, and Minnie Park who will graduate this summer. Included in the article are quotes from each of them featuring the most important thing they learned at CSU. Congratulations Aryeh, Peter, and Minnie!

April 13: Sue has been awarded the MIT Houghton Lectureship for 2021. An article to this effect has been written up on the ATS departmental page.

March 16: Sue has been made a Visiting Professor in Physics at Oxford University.

March 6: There is more good news of graduations! Congratulations to the new Dr. Aryeh Drager who successfully defended his PhD dissertation, "Response of Convective Cold Pools and Precipitation to Changes in Soil Moisture." The new Dr. Drager will graduate in May.

February 29: Jennie, Minnie, Aryeh, Peter, and Leah volunteer at Little Shop of Physics, an event held at CSU annually to showcase STEM to elementary and middle-school aged students. While there, the volunteers from our group showcased one of our drones, demonstrated how clouds form in the presence of supersaturation and CCN, and demonstrated some of the basics of thermodynamics in a fun and exciting way.

February 4: There's a new Dr. in the group! Congratulations to Peter Marinescu who successfully defended his PhD dissertation, "Observations of Aerosol Particles and Deep Convective Updrafts and the Modeling of Their Interactions." The new Dr. Marinescu will officially graduate in May.

January 30: Congratulations to Yasutaka, who successfully defended his MS Thesis, "On the Relation between Satellite Observed Liquid Water Path, Cloud Droplet Number Concentration and Cloud Base Rain Rate and Its Implication for the Auto-Conversion Rate in Stratocumulus Clouds." Yasutaka will stay on in pursuit of his PhD.

January 29: Congratulations to Minnie and Alex who have won First and Second place Student Oral Presentations respectively for their presentations at the 12th Symposium on Aerosol-Cloud-Climate Interactions during the American Meteorological Society annual meeting. Minnie's presentation, entitled "Understanding Aerosol Impacts on Tropical Land-Sea-Breeze Convection Using a Statistical Emulator Approach", was on tropical sea breezes, the focus of her PhD research. Aelx's presentation, titled Exploring the Sensitivity of Tropical Oceanic Convective Clouds to Aerosol Characteristics Under Differing Thermodynamic Environments, examined tropical congestus clouds in the context of the NASA CAMP2Ex field campaign.

January 21: Brianna Lund joins our group as a Research Associate. Brianna joins us from Radiometrics, where she worked in Quality and Customer Support. Welcome Brianna!

January 13-17: Alex, Leah, and Minnie present at the annual American Meteorological Society meeting in Boston.

Click here for news from 2019

What we do