Caltech Undergraduate Research Journal

CURJ is Caltech's award-winning undergraduate research journal, dedicated to highlighting the accomplishments of the numerous undergraduates conducting research at Caltech during the SURF program and throughout the academic year.

Featured Article

Up Above the Clouds

Marie Wingyee Lau, Dong L. Wu, and Yuk L. Yung

An image for the article on display.

Clouds play a major role in climate determination. However, at the same time, they are also a source of major uncertainty in climate studies. Different cloud characteristics such as the altitude and thickness can all affect climate change. Currently, measurement data of three dimensional profiling of clouds is only available only for a few sporadic locations on Earth. These measurements are done through ground based Lidar profiling techniques which send light pulses to the sky and measure the time taken for detecting a reflected signal. With that being said, reliable, global, long term statistics of clouds are available from satellite images, but these satellite images are two dimensional. In this project, the authors attempt to develop a reliable, three dimensional, global and long term observations of clouds for use in current climate and weather models.