David S. Nolan

Professor and Chair

Department of Atmospheric Sciences

Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science

University of Miami , Miami, Florida USA



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:

Hurricane Dynamics:

Moon, Yumin, and David S. Nolan, 2015: Spiral rainbands in a numerical simulation of Hurricane Bill (2009). Part II: Propagation of inner rainbands. J. Atmos. Sci ., 72 , 191-215. Download PDF.

Moon, Yumin, and David S. Nolan, 2015: Spiral rainbands in a numerical simulation of Hurricane Bill (2009). Part I: Structures and comparisons to observations. J. Atmos. Sci ., 72 , 164-190. Download PDF.

Onderlinde, Matthew J., and David S. Nolan, 2014: Environmental helicity and its effects on development and intensification of tropical cyclones. J. Atmos. Sci. , 71 , 4308-4320. Download PDF.

Nolan, David S., Jun A. Zhang, and Eric. W. Uhlhorn, 2014: On the limits of estimating the maximum wind speeds in hurricanes. Mon. Wea. Rev., 142 , 2814-2837. Download PDF.

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.

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

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 .

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.


MSC 405: Atmospheric Dynamics I. Spring Semester.

MPO 652: Vortex Dynamics. Spring Semester.

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

MPO 665: General Circulation of the Atmosphere. Spring Semester (last taught in 2009).


Students and Collaborators:

Kieran Bhatia : graduate student


Matthew Onderlinde: graduate student


Joaquin Blanco: graduate student


Nathan Dahl: postdoctoral associate


Jun A. Zhang : frequent collaborator



Assorted Links:


My consulting web page .




MPEG movies of three-dimensional vortex dynamics under stretching.