Skip to section navigation


ORISE partners with NOAA to operate climate monitoring network

U.S. Climate Reference Network (CRN) station in Hawaii

The U.S. Climate Reference Network (CRN) consists of 121 stations throughout the continental U.S., Alaska, Hawaii and Canada. The stations use highly accurate and reliable sensors and gauges to measure temperature, wind speed and precipitation. The network allows scientists to study the climate of an area over sustained periods, from 50 to 100 years. Pictured here is a CRN station at the Mauna Loa Slope Observatory in Hawaii.

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) works closely with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division (ATDD) to perform lower atmosphere research concentrated in the areas of air quality, contaminant dispersion and climate.

ATDD is one of several field divisions of NOAA’s Air Resources Laboratory, headquartered in Silver Spring, Md. ATDD began as a Weather Bureau Special Projects research office in 1948 under Atomic Energy Commission sponsorship in Oak Ridge, Tenn. Major contributions to many of the classic models of air pollution dispersion were made there.

ATDD continues to operate as a source of meteorological information and expertise for the U.S. Department of Energy and its contractors in Oak Ridge, though its activities have expanded. It now operates primarily as a NOAA research organization with two permanent research stations, one at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory Walker Branch Watershed, and the other on the DOE reservation at the Chestnut Ridge Environmental Study site.

ATDD’s on-site facilities include a wind tunnel laboratory, machine shop, electronics lab and chemical instruments lab.