Andreas Muhlbauer

Postdoctoral Research Associate

AndreasDr. Andreas Muhlbauer studied meteorology and graduated from the University of Innsbruck in Austria. He earned his MSc on dynamical meteorology and atmospheric predictability in the research group of Professor Martin Ehrendorfer in 2005. During his master studies he spent three weeks as a visiting scientist at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center's Global Modeling and Assimilation Office (GMAO) in Greenbelt, Maryland, collaborating with Dr. Ron Errico.

The major objective of this work was to understand how the general predictability of atmospheric flows is limited by the growth of small initial errors and the transport of these errors across scales due to the nonlinear interactions in the governing equations. The contribution of error growth and scale interaction in limiting the forecast skill of atmospheric models was studied in the framework of quasi-geostrophic shallow water theory on the sphere.

Andreas then moved as a doctoral student to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich, Switzerland, and joined the research group of Professor Dr. Ulrike Lohmann. He received his PhD from ETH in 2008. At ETH Andreas worked on the mesoscale modeling of aerosol-cloud-precipitation interactions and the possible implications of aerosol-cloud interactions for orographic precipitation. The major focus of this work was to simulate how aerosol particles (anthropogenic as well as natural) can affect microphysical processes in orographic clouds and how these microphysical changes translate into surface precipitation changes under different dynamical conditions.

As a post-doctoral researcher at ETH, Andreas continued working on aerosol- and cloud-microphysical modeling on the mesoscale and became a case leader of the 7th World Meteorological Organization (WMO) International Cloud Modeling Workshop. The still ongoing work related to the WMO workshop currently involves strong collaboration with scientists from NCAR's Research Applications Laboratory (RAL), the University of Wisconsin and the Saint Louis University. The goal within the WMO cloud modeling workshop is to inter-compare different state-of-the-art atmospheric models and different cloud-microphysical parameterizations in their ability to simulate microphysical properties of mixed-phase clouds which were observed during a field campaign in Switzerland. Further key issues of the workshop are the initiation of ice by heterogeneous ice nucleation, the partitioning of mass between the liquid and ice phase in orographic clouds and the distribution of precipitation in mountainous terrain.

In his spare time Andreas likes various outdoor activities such as biking, hiking, surfing, ski touring and he is a certified diver. Recently his special interest in foreign countries took Andreas to several remote places in Australia, Belize, Madagascar, Kenya and South Africa.