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CIRES/ NOAA Global Systems Laboratory, Fire Weather and Aerosol Modeling Scientist

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado





Employment Type:

Research Faculty



Date Posted:


Job Summary

The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES)—a joint collaboration of the University of Colorado Boulder and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has an immediate opening for a Research Scientist with experience in atmospheric physics, numerical weather prediction and/or air quality modeling. The scientist will have an appointment within the Earth Prediction Advancement Division (EPAD) of GSL (

NOAA/GSL/EPAD has been leading the development of regional and global aerosol and air quality forecast models in collaboration with other NOAA laboratories over many years. One of these models High-Resolution Rapid Refresh coupled with Smoke (HRRR-Smoke) is NOAA’s operational high-resolution model, which forecasts smoke from wildland fires and its impact on radiation []. The coupled meteorology-chemistry models developed at GSL allow simulating complex aerosol-meteorology interactions on regional and global scales (e.g., WRF-Chem). In recent years EPAD in collaboration with other groups has been leading the development of new smoke and fire weather forecasting models based on the Unified Forecast System []. Currently the smoke, dust and fire weather simulation capabilities are being tested in NOAA’s new experimental numerical weather prediction model Rapid-Refresh Forecasting System coupled with smoke and dust [].

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) is an internationally recognized leader in innovative environmental science and research and is located at the University of Colorado Boulder. At CIRES, more than 800 environmental science professionals work to understand the dynamic Earth system, including people’s relationship with the planet. CIRES has partnered with NOAA since 1967, and our areas of expertise include weather and climate, changes at Earth’s poles, air quality and atmospheric chemistry, water resources, solid Earth sciences, and more. Our vision is to be instrumental in ensuring a sustainable future environment by advancing scientific and societal understanding of the Earth system.

The Global Systems Laboratory (GSL) is one of ten NOAA Research laboratories and is located in Boulder, Colorado. The GSL researchers develop the-state-of-the-art weather and air quality models, state-of-the-science decision support tools and visualization systems, and use high-performance computing technology to support a Weather-Ready Nation. GSL strives to advance its workforce scientifically, technically, and professionally. We are also committed to increased diversity equity, inclusion and accessibility as well as a strong foundation for career growth.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

  • Implement and test new fire weather and aerosol parameterizations in fine-scale UFS models.
  • Develop and test novel approaches to improve the representation of the aerosol-radiation-cloud interactions in the NWP models.
  • Evaluate the coupled fire weather and aerosol-weather models using atmospheric data from NOAA’s field observations.
  • Assist with community support, participate in developer meetings, and contribute to project reports.
  • Present research findings in peer-reviewed publications.
  • In addition to the duties identified above, within CIRES and NOAA/GSL, a Research Scientist is also responsible for conducting original research.
  • Outreach, education, and service activities are also important components of a Research Scientist’s effort.

What You Should Know

  • This position will be rostered in CIRES at the University of Colorado Boulder, but will be physically situated in the David Skaggs Research Center, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305, on a federal research campus.
  • Selected finalists will be required to pass a federal background check for site access.
  • Foreign nationals’ access to the federal facility will be limited to weekdays, and with the presence of a federal escort.
  • Given the requirements and timeline for this project, a targeted start date no later than June 1 2023 is strongly preferred.
  • All University of Colorado Boulder employees are required to comply with the campus COVID-19 vaccine requirement. New employees must provide proof of vaccination or receive a medical or religious exemption within 30 days of employment.

What We Can Offer

  • We offer a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package.
  • The annual hiring salary range for this position is $67,000 - $80,000. Salary is commensurate with education and experience and determined based on our CIRES internal career track classification.
  • Relocation expenses are available for this position following CIRES and the University of Colorado’s relocation processes and procedures.
  • This position can accommodate a hybrid work modality.
  • Boulder is a vibrant community with access to mountain parks, dog parks, miles of trails, rivers, lakes, cafes, restaurants, boutiques, theaters, museums, and sports venues. Boulder was recently ranked as one of the top places to live in the U.S. by U.S. News.
  • As an employee at CU Boulder, you receive a pass allowing free access to the regional public transit system, which is an outstanding network of buses and light rail systems that provide service within Boulder and connect to Denver, the Denver airport, and surrounding communities.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be ambitious. Be groundbreaking. Be Boulder.

What We Require

  • PhD degree in Atmospheric Sciences, Applied Math, Physics, Computer science or a related field.
  • At least 1 year of post-doctoral research experience.
  • Experience in working with atmospheric models, aerosol and/or physics parameterizations.
  • Proven capability for self-guided, motivated, and original research as documented by first-author publications.

What You Will Need

  • Excellent programming (Fortran or C#) and scripting skills.
  • Expertise with Linux and UNIX operating systems.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team.
  • Desire and ability to contribute to an inclusive work environment.

What We Would Like You to Have

  • Experience in developing coupled meteorology-chemistry models.
  • Experience with the Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) and/or UFS models.
  • Experience with support of community code.
  • Experience with diagnostics and verification of meteorological and air quality forecasts.
  • Experience in parallel programming (OpenMP, MPI).

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:

  1. Resume or CV.
  2. Cover letter addressed to the Search Committee briefly describing your qualifications, professional goals, and specific interest in this position.
  3. List of publications- please hyperlink articles.
  4. List of 3 professional references who may be asked to provide a reference on your behalf (one of your references must be a supervisor). Please include name, affiliation, professional relationship, and current contact information for each. If you are selected as a finalist, we will ask you to contact your references so that they can complete a SkillSurvey questionnaire on your behalf. SkillSurvey is an online automated reference check solution. This information will be kept confidential and viewable only by the search committee.

If you are selected as the finalist, your degree will be verified by the CU Boulder Campus Human Resources department using an approved online vendor. If your degree was obtained outside of the United States, please submit a translated version as an optional attachment.

This position will remain posted until finalists have been identified. Applications received by March 22nd will receive full consideration.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Information

Posting Contact Name: Ravan Ahmadov

Posting Contact Email: