Yang Receives 2013 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Award

Cecilia M. Bitz, Paul A. Ginoux, Mark Z. Jacobson, Sergey Nizkorodov, and Ping Yang received 2013 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Award at the 2013 AGU Fall Meeting, held 9–13 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes “research contributions by exceptional mid-career scientists in the fields of atmospheric and climate sciences.”


yang_pingThe Atmospheric Sciences section of AGU awards one of the five Ascent Awards to Professor Ping Yang of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at Texas A&M University for significant contributions to atmospheric scattering, radiative transfer, and remote sensing.

Yang’s area of research and expertise is atmospheric scattering, radiative transfer, and remote sensing. Much of his work has been in understanding and simulating the single-scattering properties of nonspherical ice crystals and aerosol particles with various shapes ranging from quasi-spherical shapes to highly complicated geometries.

In addition, Ping has developed comprehensive databases of the single-scattering properties of ice crystals and dust aerosols (for a spectral region spanning from ultraviolet to the far-infrared). These databases have been made available to the research community and are extensively used by top research groups worldwide in the remote sensing of radiative properties of ice clouds and dust aerosols. Yang’s dust optical property database has been used not only by atmospheric scientists but also by researchers in planetary science.

Among many major accomplishments, Ping Yang was among the first to investigate the impact of ice crystal habit (shape) on the radiative forcing of tropical ice clouds using satellite retrieval products and rigorous radiative transfer modeling capabilities. The products of Ping’s research have been used by a wide range of researchers working in radiative transfer in cirrus clouds in association with climate modeling and satellite remote sensing.

His nominators noted especially his “unselfish services to the research community…serving on many boards and committees, including the International Radiation Commission.” Another noted that his “accomplishments are amazing.” They also noted, “as a mid-career researcher, Dr. Ping Yang is already an internationally recognized scientist and leader in the discipline of atmospheric scattering, radiation, and remote sensing.”

We are extremely pleased to present a 2013 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Award to Professor Ping Yang.

—PETER J. WEBSTER, Georgia Tech University, Atlanta


I am honored and humbled that the AGU Atmospheric Sciences section decided to select me as one of the five recipients of the 2013 Ascent Award and would like to thank the selection committee for this recognition.

I am very grateful to my Ph.D. dissertation advisor, Kuo-Nan Liou, for introducing me into the discipline of atmospheric radiation and for guiding my career development over the years. I would also like to thank Drs. Gerald North, George Kattawar, Thomas Wilheit, Kenneth Bowman, Warren Wiscombe, Michael King, James Coakley, Thomas Vonder Haar, William L. Smith, and Andrew Heymsfield for mentoring my academic growth.

Additionally, I am extremely fortunate to have had opportunities to collaborate with a number of outstanding researchers, particularly, the following individuals, listed in alphabetical order: Anthony Baran, Bryan Baum, Helene Chepfer, Peter Colarco, Andrew Dessler, Oleg Dubovik, Qiang Fu, Bo-Cai Gao, Andrew Heidinger, Christina Hsu, Yongxiang Hu, Hung-Lung (Allen) Huang, Hironobu Iwabuchi, Ralph Kahn, Jhoon Kim, Istvan Laszlo, Jun Li, Quahua Liu, Xu Liu, Alexander Marshak, Patrick Minnis, Michael Mishchenko, Martin Mlynczak, Shaima Nasiri, Lazaros Oreopoulos, Steven Platnick, Jerome Riedi, ­Byung-Ju Sohn, ­Si-Chee Tsay, Manfred Wendisch, Fuzhong Weng, and Daniel Zhou.

Furthermore, it is a great privilege to work with the former and current graduate students and postdoctoral researchers in my research group at Texas A&M University.

Last but certainly not least, I thank Hal Maring of NASA, Dr. Bradley Smull of the National Science Foundation, Dr. Sid Boukabara of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and Drs. Mohan Gupta, Rangasayi Halthore, and S. Daniel Jacob of the Federal Aviation Administration for their encouragement and support.

—PING YANG, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station