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UT has signed a memorandum of agreement with the Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Air Resources Laboratory to advance collaborative research in atmospheric sciences.

The agreement, signed February 15 at ATDD headquarters in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, will facilitate joint efforts to advance understanding of air pollution, atmospheric transport processes, and weather on a regional and national level. It will also create educational opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students to collect scientific data, develop models and simulations, and transition research to applications and commercial use.

“The mission of the collaboration will be to train the next generation of scientists and engineers and provide the best available atmospheric data and scientific analysis to the global scientific community, to local and national decision makers, and to the general public,” said Bruce Baker, director of the ATDD.

Joshua Fu, professor of civil and environmental engineering at UT, has had students work with ATDD in the past and looks forward to future collaborations. Fu envisions the agreement strengthening the current partnership between UT and NOAA while providing valuable skills to undergraduate and graduate students interested in studying atmospheric sciences.

“The University of Tennessee continues to develop strategic collaborative opportunities with our federal research and development partners,” said David Millhorn, UT senior vice president and vice president for research and economic development. “We look forward to advancing contributions in the broad field of atmospheric science with our colleagues at NOAA.”

The agreement formalizes the working partnership between NOAA and UT and will open new avenues for research on how Earth’s atmosphere affects our society. Over the past two decades, ATDD and UT have partnered on joint air-surface exchange measurements, forest canopy studies, airborne remote sensing, and severe weather research.

“We look forward to expanding our partnership with NOAA in the area of atmospheric sciences,” said Taylor Eighmy, UT vice chancellor for research and engagement. “As a public research university, UT has a wonderful opportunity to further explore the complexity of the interactions of our atmosphere with forests, arable land, and waterways. This deeper collaboration will further advance our knowledge in that domain.”

ATDD is a division of NOAA’s Air Resources Laboratory, whose mission is to provide the research community and nation with the highest quality atmospheric and meteorological research needed for a healthy and safe nation.


Erin Chapin (865-974-2187,