David S. Nolan

Professor and Chair

Department of Atmospheric Sciences

Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science

University of Miami , Miami, Florida USA


Standing in front of my favorite hurricane, August, 2013.

Previous Pictures.


Born: Yokosuka U.S. Naval Base, Japan.

High School: Phillips Exeter Academy , Exeter, NH.

College: Harvard College , B.A., Physics, cum laude , 1990.

Graduate School: Harvard University, Dept. of Earth and Planetary Sciences , Ph.D., 1996.


Previous employment:

Mathematics Department , Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory , 11/96-11/98.

Dept. of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University , 11/98-6/01.

Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory , 07/01-06/02.


Curriculum Vitae: html , PDF .


Research areas and selected papers and presentations:

Tornadoes and Severe Storms:

Nolan, David S., 2013: On the use of Doppler-radar derived winds to diagnose the secondary circulations of tornadoes. J. Atmos. Sci. , 70 , 1160-1171. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., 2012: Three-dimensional instabilities in tornado-like vortices with secondary circulations. J. Fluid Mech ., 711 , 61-100. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., 2005: A new scaling for tornado-like vortices. J. Atmos. Sci. , 62 , 2639-2645. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., 2004: Vortex sheets, vortex rings, and a mesocyclone. Presented at the 22nd Conference on Severe Local Storms, Hyannis, MA, October 2004. Download preprint PDF. Download PDF of conference talk.

Hurricane Dynamics:

Nolan, David S., Robert Atlas, Kieran T. Bhatia, and Lisa R. Bucci, 2013: Development and validation of a hurricane nature run using the Joint OSSE Nature Run and the WRF model. J. Adv. Earth. Model. Syst., 5 , 1-24. Download PDF.

Stern, Daniel P., and David S. Nolan, 2012: On the height of the warm core in tropical cyclones. J. Atmos. Sci. , 69 , 1657-1680. Download PDF.

Stern, Daniel P., and David S. Nolan, 2011: On the vertical decay rate of the maximum tangential winds in tropical cyclones. J. Atmos. Sci. , 68 , 2073-2094. Download PDF.

Moon, Yumin., David S. Nolan, and Mohamed Iskandarani, 2010: On the use of two-dimensional flow to study secondary eyewall formation in tropical cyclones. J. Atmos. Sci. , 67 , 3765-3773. Download PDF.

Moon, Yumin, and David S. Nolan, 2010: The dynamic response of the hurricane wind field to spiral rainband heating. J. Atmos. Sci., 67 , 1779-1805. Download PDF.

Moon, Yumin, and David S. Nolan, 2010: Do gravity waves transport angular momentum away from hurricanes? J. Atmos. Sci., 67 , 117-135. Download PDF.

Stern, Daniel P., and David S. Nolan, 2009: Reexamining the vertical structure of tangential winds in tropical cyclones: Observations and theory. J. Atmos. Sci. , 66 , 3579-3600. Download PDF .

Hodyss, Daniel, and David S. Nolan, 2008: The Rossby-Inertia-Buoyancy instability in baroclinic vortices. Phys. Fluids , 20 , 096602. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., Yumin Moon, and Daniel P. Stern, 2007: Tropical cyclone intensification from asymmetric convection: Energetics and efficiency. J. Atmos. Sci. , 64 , 3377-3405. Download PDF.

Hurricane Formation:

Nolan, David S., and Michael G. McGauley, 2012: Tropical cyclogenesis in wind shear: Climatological relationships and physical processes. To appear in Cyclones: Formation, Triggers, and Control . Kazuyoshi Oouchi and Hironori Fudeyasu, eds., Nova Science Publishers, Happauge, New York. Download PDF.

Rappin, Eric D., and David S. Nolan, 2012: The effects of vertical shear orientation on tropical cyclogenesis. Q. J. R. Meteorol. Soc. , 138 , 1035-1054. Download PDF.

McGauley, Michael G., and David S. Nolan, 2011: Measuring environmental favorability for tropical cyclogenesis by statistical analysis of threshold parameters. J. Climate. , 24 , 5968-5997. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., 2011: Evaluating environmental favorableness for tropical cyclone development with the method of point downscaling. J. Adv. Model. Earth Syst. , 3, Art. M08001, 28 pp. Download PDF.

Rappin, Eric D., David S. Nolan, and Kerry A. Emanuel, 2010: Thermodynamic control of tropical cyclogenesis in environments of radiative-convective equilibrium with shear. Quart. J. Roy. Meteorol. Soc., 136, 1954-1971. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., and Eric D. Rappin, 2008: Increased sensitivity of tropical cyclogenesis to wind shear in higher SST environments. Geophys. Res. Lett ., 35 , L14805, doi:10.1029/2008GL034147. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., 2007: What is the trigger for tropical cyclogenesis? Aust. Meteorol. Mag. , 56 , 241-266. Download PDF.

Intertropical Convergence Zone:

Nolan, David S., Scott W. Powell, Chidong Zhang, and Brian E. Mapes, 2010: Idealized simulations of the ITCZ and its multi-level flows. J. Atmos. Sci ., 67 , 4028-4053. Download PDF.

Zhang, Chidong, David S. Nolan, Christopher D. Thorncroft, and Nguyen, Hanh, 2008: Shallow meridional circulations in the tropical atmosphere. J. Climate , 21 , 3453-3470. Download PDF .

Nolan, David S., Chidong Zhang, and Shu-Hua Chen, 2007: Dynamics of the shallow circulation around ITCZ regions. J. Atmos. Sci ., 64 , 2262-2285. Download PDF .


MSC 407: Weather Analysis and Forecasting. Fall Semester (last taught in 2011).

MPO 665: General Circulation of the Atmosphere. Spring Semester.

MPO 652: Vortex Dynamics. Spring Semester.

MSC 405: Atmospheric Dynamics I. Spring Semester.


Assorted Links:


MPEG movies of three-dimensional vortex dynamics under stretching.