What is DC3?

Scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and other organizations are targeting thunderstorms in Alabama, Colorado, and Oklahoma this spring to discover what happens when clouds suck air up from Earth’s surface many miles into the atmosphere. This study is made possible by the National Science Foundation.

Thunderstorms, such as this one in eastern Colorado, can affect the atmosphere for many miles. (Photo by Bob Henson.)

The Deep Convective Clouds and Chemistry (DC3) experiment, which is scheduled to run from 15 May – 30 June 2012, will explore the influence of thunderstorms on air just beneath the stratosphere, a little-explored region that influences Earth’s climate and weather patterns. Scientists will use three research aircraft, mobile radars, lightning mapping arrays, and other tools to pull together a comprehensive picture.

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