Michael Alexander

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Atmosphere-Ocean Processes and Predictability




(303) 497-6030



Michael Alexander is a research meteorologist at the Physical Sciences Laboratory of the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratories in Boulder Colorado. Mike currently has three main research foci: air-sea-ice interactions, processes that influence moisture transport and heavy precipitation the western United States, and climate change including its impact on marine ecosystems. His studies of air-sea interaction include the influence of El Niño on global climate, precursors to El Niño events, and the affects of midlatitude sea surface temperatures and sea ice conditions on the atmospheric circulation. He recently investigate how moisture moves through the gaps in the Sierra Nevada and Cascade Mountains resulting in heavy precipitation events in the US intermountain west, including states such as Idaho, Colorado and Arizona. Mike has also worked closely with marine biologists to study how climate change may impact fish, such as the Atlantic croaker and river herring.

Research Interests

  • Air-Sea Interaction
  • Climate Dynamics
  • Oceanography
  • Climate Variability and Change
  • Marine Ecosystems


  • Ph.D., Atmospheric and Oceanic Science, UW-Madison, Dec 1990
  • M.S., Atmospheric and Oceanic Science, UW-Madison, Jan 1986
  • B.S., Atmospheric Science, Cornell University, May 1982

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