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College of Arts & Sciences
A man and a woman looking at a large tv screen with a weather map of the United States. The man is pointing at a large cloud formation.

Atmospheric Science is the study of weather analysis and predictability, climate and global change, the circulation of the atmosphere relating to weather systems and their impact on the Earth, air quality, and other atmospheric processes that affect us. Discovery and understanding in Atmospheric Science is critical to our resiliency, and preparedness ­so that we may meet the most pressing challenges of our atmosphere-dependent systems.

The main branches of Atmospheric Science are:

Meteorology and Atmospheric Dynamics involves the study of air motions that lead to thunderstorms, frontal systems, hurricanes and tornadoes.

Atmospheric Physics applies principles of physics to study atmospheric processes such as cloud formation, light scattering and energy transfer.

Atmospheric Chemistry applies principles of chemistry to study atmospheric processes such as air pollution, ozone depletion, and aerosol formation.

Climate Science studies changes in the statistics of weather from seasons to millennia and longer, addressing phenomena as such as El Niño, global warming, and the ice ages.