• Director of the Houston Lightning Mapping Array (HLMA) Network
  • Assistant Professor
Timothy Logan



ATMO 201 – Weather and Climate – introductory meteorology class

ATMO 291/491 – Independent Undergraduate Research 

ATMO 463 Air Pollution Meteorology

ATMO 689 Professional Development in Atmospheric Science


The HLMA provides a service to the surrounding community by providing timely and reliable lightning data to make informed decisions in regards to public safety interests while providing quality data for collaborative, interdisciplinary research within the university community and for K-12 STEM projects.

Professional Links

Additional Information

Extreme weather: ‘Megaflash’ lightning records certified by WMO


*This record setting lightning flash was captured by several media markets with an outreach of over 8 billion views/downloads/hits. The HLMA was used to confirm the origin of the megaflash in Texas.

New lightning records reveal power of nature and new advances in monitoring technology


Rare Wintertime Thunderstorms Recorded over the U.S. Gulf Coast

How the Saharan Dust Plume Affects North America – Texas A&M Today

Saharan Dust Plume Slams U. S., Kicking Up Climate Questions – E&E News and Scientific American

A&M Professor Studies Effects of Aerosols – The Battalion (Texas A&M University)

Lightning Safety Story – The Eagle (Bryan, TX)

Saharan Dust Story – The Star-Telegram (Fort Worth, TX)

Why You Can Smell Rain

Educational Background


Research Interests

  • My current research consists of the following funded projects:


    (1) Aerosol impacts on lightning and severe weather in the Houston Metropolitan Area. The NSF funded Experiment of Sea Breeze Convection, Aerosols, Precipitation and Environment (ESCAPE) project (2020-2023) employs the Houston Lightning Mapping Array (HLMA) to analyze lightning behavior within the confines of a larger multi-platform and interdisciplinary field campaign, the Tracking Aerosol Convection Interactions Experiment (TRACER).


    (2) Aerosol transport and impacts on low-level cloud development over land and ocean which is funded by two NSF Collaborative Research Grants (2017-2020 and 2020-2023). Research involves using surface-based Department of Energy (DOE) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) retrievals, aircraft in situ measurements, satellite retrievals, and NASA Modern Era Retrospective Reanalysis for Research (MERRA-2) data. There is a specific interest in investigating aerosols derived from biomass burning.


    (3) Using total lightning to investigate aerosol radiative and microphysical effects on deep convection. Data from the Houston Lightning Mapping Array (HLMA) will be used in a funded NASA ROSES study, ‘Integrative Analysis of Aerosol Effects on Convective Cloud and the Associated Lightning Characteristics Based on Satellite Retrieval, WRF Modeling, and Machine Learning (2022-2025)’. The objectives of our proposed research are to provide insights into aerosol microphysical and radiative effects on convective clouds and the associated lightning generation by integrating observational analyses focusing on satellite measurements and modeling studies with both statistical and physical models.


    My primary research goals are (1) investigate the relationship between lightning source/flash rates and precipitation/flooding events in the Houston Metropolitan Area and communities along the Texas Gulf Coast, (2) analyze the long-term aerosol impacts on low-level and deep convective cloud development, and (3) discern the possible impacts of biomass burning smoke aerosols on severe weather and lightning.

    Future research will incorporate laser spectroscopy to investigate the physical and radiative properties of aerosols such as mineral dust and ash/soot that are derived from local and long-range transport sources. In addition, there are future plans to expand coverage of the Houston Lightning Mapping Array to investigate the impacts of marine and tropical convection on communities and business interests along the Texas Gulf Coast as well as over remote areas of the Gulf of Mexico.

    Additional Notes

    Students in the ATMO 491 research sections are currently working on aerosol transport and physico-chemical properties regarding the 2011 Chilean and 2022 Hunga-Tonga volcanic eruptions, and using total lightning data to diagnose severe weather and transient luminous events (TLEs) over the Gulf Coast region of Texas.


    • Aerosol-cloud Interactions
    • Aerosol Chemistry
    • Biomass Burning Smoke
    • Atmospheric Electricity

Awards & Honors

  • 2015: TAMU Atmospheric Science Department Outstanding Faculty Teaching Award
  • 2015: Hubei Province, China Scientific Paper Award “Mao, F., W. Gong, and T. Logan (2013), Linear Segmentation Algorithm for Detecting Layer Boundary with LIDAR, Optics Express, 21(22), doi:10.1364/oe.21.026876.”
  • 2014: American Meteorological Society Best Student Poster Award
  • 2011: National Science Foundation East Asian and Pacific Summer Institutes (EAPSI) in China Fellowship
  • 2009: North Dakota Space Grant Consortium Fellowship

Selected Publications

    • Logan, T., B. Xi, X. Dong, R. Obrecht, Z. Li, and M. Cribb (2010), A Study of Asian Dust Plumes Using Satellite, Surface, and Aircraft Measurements during the INTEX-B Field Experiment, J. Geophy. Res., 115, D00K25, doi:10.1029/2010JD014134.

    • Logan, T., B. Xi, X. Dong, Z. Li, and M. Cribb (2013), Classification and Investigation of Asian Aerosol Properties, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 13, 2253-2265, www.atmos-chem-phys.net/13/2253/2013/doi:10.5194/acp-13-2253-2013.

    • Logan, T., B. Xi, and X. Dong (2013), A Comparison of the Mineral Dust Absorptive Properties from Two Asian Dust Events, Atmosphere, 4(1), 1-16; doi:10.3390/atmos4010001.

    • Logan, T., B. Xi, and X. Dong (2013), Biomass Burning Aerosol Properties over the Northern Great Plains during the 2012 Warm Season, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 13, 32269–32289, www.atmos-chem-phys-discuss.net/13/32269/2013/doi:10.5194/acpd-13-32269-2013.

    • Mao, F., W. Gong, and T. Logan (2013), Linear Segmentation Algorithm for Detecting Layer Boundary with LIDAR, Optics Express, 21(22), doi:10.1364/oe.21.026876.

    • Logan, T., B. Xi, and X. Dong (2014), Aerosol properties and their influences on marine boundary layer cloud condensation nuclei at the ARM mobile facility over the Azores, J. Geophys. Res., 119, doi:10.1002/2013JD021288.

    • Wang W., L. Sheng, X. Dong, W. Qu, J. Sun, H. Jin, and T. Logan (2016), Dust aerosol impact on the retrieval of cloud top height from satellite observations of CALIPSO, CloudSat and MODIS. J. Quant. Spectrosc. Radiat. Transfer, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jqsrt.2016.03.034.

    • Tian P., X. Cao, L. Zhang, N. Sun, L. Sun, T. Logan, J. Shi, Y. Wang, Y. Ji, Y. Lin, Z. Huang, T. Zhou, Y. Shi, and R. Zhang (2017), Seasonal and spatial variations in aerosol vertical distribution and optical properties over China from long-term satellite and ground-based remote sensing. Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 2509-2523, http://www.atmos-chem-phys.net/17/2509/2017/doi:10.5194/acp-17-2509-2017.

    • Logan, T., X. Dong, and B. Xi (2018), Aerosol properties and their impacts on surface CCN at the ARM Southern Great Plains site during the 2011 Midlatitude Continental Convective Clouds Experiment. Adv. Atmos. Sci., 35(2), 224–233, https://doi.org/10.1007/s00376-017-7033-2.

    • Logan, T. (2018), Anomalous Lightning Behavior during the 26-27 August 2007 Northern Great Plains Severe Weather Event. J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 123, https://doi.org/10.1002/2017JD027750.

    • Li, R., G. Tang, J. Ding, T. Logan, S. D. Brooks, D. R. Collins, P. Yang and G. W. Kattawar (2018), Laboratory measurements of light scattering properties of kaolinite dust at 532 nm, Aerosol Sci. Tech., doi:10.1080/02786826.2018.1444729, 1-13.

    • Bowen P., Y. Wang, J. Hu, Y. Lin, J.-S. Hsieh, T. Logan, X. Feng, J. H. Jiang, Y. Yung, and R. Zhang, (2018), Impacts of Saharan Dust on Regional Climate and Tropical Cyclogenesis over the Atlantic, J. Clim., https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0776.1.

    • Pan Z., F. Mao, W. Wang, T. Logan, J. Hong (2018), Examining Intrinsic Aerosol-Cloud Interactions in South Asia through Multiple Satellite Observations, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 123, https://doi.org/10.1029/2017JD028232, 1-15.

    • Zhang, Y., J. Fan, T. Logan, Z. Li, and C. R. Homeyer (2019), Wildfire impact on environmental thermodynamics and severe convective storms, Geophys. Res. Lett., 46. https://doi.org/10.1029/2019GL084534

    • Zheng, X., B. Xi, X. Dong, T. Logan, Y. Wang, and P. Wu (2020). Investigation of Aerosol-Cloud Interactions under Different Absorptive Aerosol Regimes using ARM SGP Ground-Based Measurements, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-20-3483-2020, 3483-3501.

    • Logan, T., X. Dong, B. Xi, X. Zheng, P. Wu, Y. Wang, **E. Marlow, and **J. W. Maddux (2020), Quantifying Long-Term Seasonal and Regional Impacts of North American Fire Activity on Continental Boundary Layer Aerosols and Cloud Condensation Nuclei, Earth and Space Science, 7, e2020EA001113. https://doi.org/10.1029/2020EA001113. **Undergraduate Independent Research Students

    • Wang, Y., X. Zheng, X. Dong, B. Xi, P. Wu, T. Logan, and Y. Yung (2020), Impacts of long-range transport of aerosols on marine-boundary-layer clouds in the eastern North Atlantic, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 14741-14755. https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-20-14741-2020.

    • Pan, B., Wang, Y., Logan, T., Hsieh, J.‐S., Jiang, J. H., Li, Y., & Zhang, R. (2020). Determinant role of aerosols from industrial sources in Hurricane Harvey's catastrophe. Geophysical Research Letters, 47, e2020GL090014. https://doi.org/10.1029/2020GL090014.

    • Logan, T. (2021), An analysis of the performance of the Houston Lightning Mapping Array during an intense period of convection during Tropical Storm Harvey, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 126, e2020JD033270. https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JD033270. Special Issue: The Three Major Hurricanes of 2017: Harvey, Irma, and Maria

    • Leal, P. B. C., J. A. Schrass, T. N. Giblette, D. F. Hunsaker, H. Shen, T. S. Logan, and D. J. Hartl (2021), Effects of atmospheric profiles on sonic boom perceived level from supersonic vehicles, J. AIAA, https://doi.org/10.2514/1.J059209, 1-9.

    • Zheng, X., Xi, B., Dong, X., Wu, P., Logan, T., and Wang, Y. (2022), Environmental effects on aerosol–cloud interaction in non-precipitating marine boundary layer (MBL) clouds over the eastern North Atlantic, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 22, 335–354, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-22-335-2022, 2022.

    • Peterson, M. J., T. J. Lang, T. Logan, C-W Kiong, M. Gijben, R. Holle, I. Kolmasova, M. Marisaldi, J. Montanya, S. D. Pawar, D. Zhang, M. Brunet, and R. S. Cerveny (2022), New WMO Certified Megaflash Lightning Extremes for Flash Distance (768 km) and Duration (17.01 seconds) Recorded from Space, Bull. Amer. Met. Soc., 21, https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-21-0254.1.