|President Obama names UND atmospheric scientist to list of top up-and-coming researchers|
President Barack Obama included UND atmospheric scientist Jianglong Zhang in his list of 100 beginning researchers receiving the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers. This award is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on young professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. The recipients will receive their awards in the fall at a special White House ceremony.
"These extraordinarily gifted young scientists and engineers represent the best in our country," President Obama said. "With their talent, creativity, and dedication, I am confident that they will lead their fields in new breakthroughs and discoveries and help us use science and technology to lift up our nation and our world."
The list included researchers from some of the most widely recognized names in research science, including Harvard, Princeton, Lawrence Berkeley Lab, the University of California, the University of Texas—and UND.
“I cannot begin to say how proud I am to see UND listed among the most prestigious universities in the world,” said Bruce Smith, dean of the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences, which is home to Zhang’s department. “Congratulations to Professor Zhang.”
“This is a tremendous honor and is a tribute to Dr. Zhang’s abilities and hard work,” said Mike Poellot, Chester Fritz Distinguished Professor and chair of Zhang’s department.
Zhang’s most recent research focuses on satellite detection of atmospheric aerosols and improving aerosol and visibility forecasting through data assimilation into global models. Aerosols are suspended particles in the air which impact climate through mechanisms such as reflecting solar energy, warming the atmosphere, modifying cloud properties and precipitation patterns.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has determined that aerosols could have a similar impact to climate like greenhouse gases do, but opposite in sign. Yet much is still unknown, Zhang said. He is interested in the effect of aerosols on climate change. His research is also expected to facilitate air quality studies and improve regional particle pollution forecasts.
Zhang, a native of Xining, in central China, graduated from Peking University with a degree in atmospheric physics; he got his Ph.D. in 2004 from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He came to UND in 2007.
-- Juan Pedraza, Writer/Editor, University Relations, firstname.lastname@example.org, 777-6571