The Department of Geography is home to the Delaware Environmental Observing System.
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Meteorology & Climatology

The science of Climatology seeks to improve our understanding of the varying and changing conditions of our environment, and of the natural and human-influenced processes and events that affect those conditions. 

Questions about climate change, and its causes and implications, are among the central environmental question of our time, and the climatology faculty are providing key answers to these questions.  The climatology faculty research focus on land/ocean/ice– atmosphere interactions, and climate dynamics and variability with a particular emphasis on understanding the role of snow and ice in our climate system.  The faculty employ a wide range of models, from cloud scale to climate scale, and use environmental observations including surface, upper air, and satellite data, along with state-of-the-art methods of analysis and modeling to study our climate system.
The faculty who are actively involved in some or all of these areas of climate science are: Drs. Cristina Archer, Tracy DeLiberty, Cathleen Geiger, Brian Hanson, Dan Leathers, David Legates, Sara Rauscher, and Dana Veron.  The department also houses The Office of the Delaware State Climatologist and the Delaware Environmental Observing System. Both centers provide weather and climate information and decision making tools to State agencies and citizens of Delaware.

Specific research projects of the climate scientists, some of which comprise multi-year grants from federal agencies like NSF, NOAA, NASA, include the following:

  • Snow ablation events in the Great Lakes Basin (graduate student Zachary Suriano and Dr. Dan Leathers)
  • Arctic sea ice-cloud interactions (Dr. Dana Veron, graduate student Michaela King)
  • Sea ice thickness and change in the polar oceans (Dr. Cathleen Geiger and Dr. Tracy DeLiberty)
  • Dynamic effects of sea ice and polar climate on Antarctic minke whale habitat and behavior (graduate student Jessica Lee, Dr. Matt Oliver, and Dr. Tracy DeLiberty)
  • Investigate differences in precipitation simulations with the cloud microphysics parameterizations available ifn the WRF model (graduate student Carly Buxton and Dr. Brian Hanson)
  • Impact of different climate model trajectories on vegetation in tropical and subtropical regions (Dr. Sara Rauscher)


The department offers educational programs for students with interests in weather and climate.  We have a new undergraduate Meteorology and Climatology BS program that fulfills the National Weather Service and American Meteorological Society standards for a meteorology program We also have a long standing Environmental Science BS with Atmospheric Science concentration with those students wanting a broader emphasis in the environment.  At the graduate level, we offer a Geography Master of Science program and a specialized PhD in Climatology.  You can find additional information about each program under the “Academics” on the main menu bar or contact the Meteorology and Climatology Director Dr. Dan Leathers at leathers@udel.edu or 302-831-8764.

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CEOE School & Departments

School of Marine Science & Policy

Advancing the understanding, stewardship, and conservation of estuarine, coastal, and ocean environments.

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Department of Geological Sciences

Discovering how geological processes have operated over various time scales to create and influence the planet’s surface environments.

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Department of Geography

Investigating the interactions between people and the environment and the processes that explain the location of human and natural phenomena.

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College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment • 111 Robinson Hall • Newark, DE 19716 • USA
Phone: 302-831-2841 • E-mail: ceoe-info@udel.edu

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