Cloud Processes Research Group

Susan C. van den Heever

Monfort Professor

Who we are

Hello and welcome to the homepage of Professor Sue van den Heever's research group. 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 observtions 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 are currently participating in NASA's CAMP2Ex being conducted in the region of Philippines. Sue is serving as the P-3 flight scientist and dropsonde PI, and Sean and Alex are responsible for dropping the dropsondes and are also assisting with flight planning. See Recent News below for regular updates and photos of the campaign which runs through 6 October 2019.

Recent News


October 15: Edmore Kori, a PhD student from the University of Venda, begins visiting our group for a month. Edmore is studying geomorphology and the combined effects of rain and wind on soil. Welcome Edmore!

October 8: Alex, Sean, and Sue return from the NASA CAMP2Ex field campaign in the Philippines. They spent a combined 18 weeks in Clark Freeport Zone, Philippines to work on this important NASA field campaign in which 19 NASA P-3 flights were conducted. Our group oversaw dropsonde activities and made significant contributions to flight operations, flight planning and data analysis. The field campaign was a tremendous success, providing a suite of observations of the thermodynamic, microphysical, radiative and chemical characteristics of a variety of convective clouds from shallow cumulus to deeper congestus clouds, as well as the environment conditions in which they developed.

The van den Heever group members participating in the field phase of the CAMP2Ex project. From Left: Alex Sokolowsky, Sue van den Heever, and Sean Freeman.

August 31: CAMP2Ex, the field campaign that Alex and Sean are currently deployed on, has been written up on the NASA website and in the Manila Bulletin. Sue is quoted in both articles.

August 19: Alex and Sean depart Colorado for the Philippines to participate in the CAMP2Ex Field Campaign. Sean and Alex will spend the next 7 weeks at Clark International Airport on the island of Luzon in the Philippines flying and dropping dropsondes from the NASA P-3 aircraft and forecasting for the mission. The CAMP2Ex project is designed primarily to examine the impacts of aerosol on clouds and precipitation, and more can be read about the CAMP2Ex campaign here.

August 15: Nick Falk joins our group as a new MS student. Nick comes to us from UC Davis, where he received his BS. Welcome Nick!

August 1: Congratulations to Peter who won the First Place Poster award at the 2019 AMS Mesoscale conference. Peter's poster, titled "The Impacts of Aerosol Particles on Deep Convective Clouds - a Multimodel Assessment", described some of the research he has been conducting as part of the Aerosol, Cloud, Precipitation, and Climate (ACPC) working group.

August 1: Welcome to Bowen Pan, who joins our group as a Postdoctoral fellow. She joins us from Texas A&M, where she recently finished her PhD under the advisement of Renyi Zhang.

July 29-August 2: Jennie, Leah, Minnie, and Peter present at the 2019 AMS Mesoscale conference in Savannah, GA.

Click here for news from 2019

What we do