Graeme Stephens

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Graeme Stephens

Graeme Stephens Royal Society.jpg
Graeme Stephens at the Royal Society admissions day in London, July 2018
Graeme Leslie Stephens
Alma materUniversity of Melbourne (BS, PhD)[1]
Known forCloudSat[2]
AwardsJule G. Charney Award (2005)
Scientific career
FieldsAtmospheric sciences
Colorado State University[3]
University of Reading
University of Melbourne
ThesisThe transfer of radiation in cloudy atmospheres (1977)

Graeme Leslie Stephens FRS[4] is director of the center for climate sciences at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology[5] and professor of earth observation the University of Reading.[6][7]


Stephens was educated at the University of Melbourne in Australia where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics 1973 in followed by a PhD in meteorology in 1977.[1]

Career and research[edit]

Stephens research has provided leadership in three major disciplinary areas of Earth sciences:

  1. Atmospheric radiation and radiative transfer[4]
  2. Earth observations and remote sensing[4]
  3. Understanding critical cloud-climate feedbacks and related effects on the Earth's energy budget[4]

Stephens has pioneered quantitative uses of global Earth observations and combined this with theory to study Earth's climate change feedback.[4] He provided leadership in designing and developing international satellite programs exemplified by his creation and leadership of the decade long CloudSat satellite mission[2] that is providing novel insights and understanding of the Earth's clouds, precipitation and their role in climate.[4][3][8]

Awards and honours[edit]

Stephens was elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering of the United States in 2015,[4] received the Jule G. Charney Award of the American Meteorological Society for pioneering advances in understanding and measuring radiation processes and their role in climate, and received the Gold Medal of the International Radiation Commission in recognition of world leading contributions to the radiation community.[4] He also received National Aeronautics Space Administration, Exceptional Public Service Medal.[4]

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2018.[4]


  1. ^ a b Stephens, Graeme Leslie (1977). The transfer of radiation in cloudy atmospheres (PhD thesis). University of Melbourne. OCLC 220235247.
  2. ^ a b Stephens, Graeme L.; Vane, Deborah G.; Boain, Ronald J.; Mace, Gerald G.; Sassen, Kenneth; Wang, Zhien; Illingworth, Anthony J.; O'connor, Ewan J.; Rossow, William B.; Durden, Stephen L.; Miller, Steven D.; Austin, Richard T.; Benedetti, Angela; Mitrescu, Cristian (2002). "THE CLOUDSAT MISSION AND THE A-TRAIN: A New Dimension of Space-Based Observations of Clouds and Precipitation". Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society. 83 (12): 1771–1790. doi:10.1175/BAMS-83-12-1771. ISSN 0003-0007. open access
  3. ^ a b Stephens, Graeme L.; Tsay, Si-Chee; Stackhouse, Paul W.; Flatau, Piotr J. (1990). "The Relevance of the Microphysical and Radiative Properties of Cirrus Clouds to Climate and Climatic Feedback". Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences. 47 (14): 1742–1754. doi:10.1175/1520-0469(1990)047<1742:TROTMA>2.0.CO;2. ISSN 0022-4928.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Anon (2018). "Professor Graeme Stephens FRS". London: Royal Society. One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from the website where:

    “All text published under the heading 'Biography' on Fellow profile pages is available under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.” --"Terms, conditions and policies | Royal Society". Archived from the original on 2016-11-11. Retrieved 2018-06-27.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)

  5. ^ Stephens, Graeme. "Science - Center for Climate Sciences (3292): People: Graeme Stephens".
  6. ^ Reading, The University of. "Graeme Stephens Home Page".
  7. ^ Graeme Stephens publications indexed by the Scopus bibliographic database. (subscription required)
  8. ^ Stephens, Graeme L. (2005). "Cloud Feedbacks in the Climate System: A Critical Review". Journal of Climate. 18 (2): 237–273. doi:10.1175/JCLI-3243.1. ISSN 0894-8755.

 This article incorporates text available under the CC BY 4.0 license.