The research carried out in my group relates to the long range transport of substances in the atmosphere, and the impacts of meteorological processes on the environment. This includes work in several areas, with the common element being our use of time- and space-resolved meteorological observations, processed and analyzed using techniques based, in some way, on dynamical principles. On this page we highlight several areas of work that are underway or were recently completed. Biographical information about John Merrill is available here.
The Pacific Atmospheric Sulfur Experiment, PASE, is a comprehensive study of the chemistry of sulfur in the remote marine troposphere carried out using the NCAR C-130 aircraft based out of Christmas Island in August-September, 2007.
The instrumentation and flight tracks used were designed for measurement of the vertical fluxes of gas-phase compounds in the (nearly) cloud-free convective boundary layer. Additional information about the project as a whole, including specific information about Merrill's work in PASE is available here.
A campaign of weekly sonde ascents to measure the vertical profile of ozone has been underway at the Narragansett Bay Campus since the spring of 2004. Using supplies and ground equipment provided by the NOAA ESRL Ozone and Water Vapor group, we prepare, release and receive data from balloon-borne Electrochemical Cell Ozonesondes. When additional funding is available, we participate in intensive observation exercises, often releasing sondes daily. Additional information on the ozonesonde project and results is available here.
Meteorologists have long been interested in the vertical distribution of the wind near the surface, both in theory and in practice. For six weeks from January 1 to February 12, 2009 a Triton Sonic Wind Profiler (Second Wind, Inc.) was stationed at the GSO pier. During this time the instrument collected data on horizontal wind speed and direction, vertical wind speed, and surface temperature and pressure. The data were averaged over ten minute periods and were available over the height range 40-200 meters above sea level. The data were analyzed with a focus on boundary layer structure and on wind energy. More