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 Atmospheric Physics And Weather (329E): People
Brian  Kahn's Picture
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
M/S 233-304
4800 Oak Grove Drive
Pasadena, CA 91109
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Curriculum Vitae:

Brian Kahn

Dr. Brian Kahn is a Research Scientist working closely with the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) group. His research interests include active and passive remote sensing of clouds, temperature, and water vapor, with a specific focus on observing cloud and climate related atmospheric processes leveraging the natural synergy of satellite sensor constellations.

  • Ph.D, Atmospheric Sciences, University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (DAOS) (2004)
  • M.S., Atmospheric Sciences, UCLA DAOS (2001)
  • B.S. (with honors), Meteorology, San Jose State University (SJSU) (1995)


The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder, AIRS, is an instrument whose goal is to support climate research and improved weather forecasting.

JIFRESSE is a scientific collaboration between UCLA and JPL to improve understanding and to develop future projections about global climate change.

CloudSat Icon CloudSat
CloudSat is an experimental satellite that uses radar to study clouds and precipitation from space. CloudSat flys in orbital formation as part of the A-Train constellation of satellites (Aqua, CloudSat, CALIPSO, PARASOL, and Aura).

Professional Experience
  • Research Scientist, JPL (2011-Present)
  • Scientist, JPL (2009-2011)
  • Visiting Researcher, UCLA, Joint Institute for Regional Earth System Science and Engineering (JIFRESSE) (2009-Present)
  • Assistant Researcher IV, UCLA/JIFRESSE (2008)
  • NASA Postdoctoral Program (NPP) Fellow (2005-2008)
  • Academic Part-Time Researcher, JPL (2003-2005)
  • Graduate Research Assistant, UCLA (2000-2004)
  • Teaching Fellow, UCLA (1999-2002)
  • On-Air Personality for Pulse of This Planet, KKUP, 91.5 FM, Cupertino, CA (1998-2004)
  • Physics Lab Instructor, SJSU (1997-1999)
  • Lecturer on Weather and Climate, SJSU (1997-1999)
  • Exchange Student, Urals State University, Ekaterinburg, Russia (1996-1997)
  • Summer Intern, National Weather Service Forecast Office, Anchorage, AK (1994-1995)

Selected Awards
  • NPP Fellowship Award (2005-2008)
  • NASA Earth Systems Science (ESS) Fellowship (2001-2004)
  • Neiburger Teaching Award (2000) and Brian Bosart Award, UCLA DAOS (2001)
  • Scholarship to attend Urals State University, Ekaterinburg, Russia (1996-1997)

Selected Publications
  1. Guillaume, A., Q. Yue, S. Wong, B. H. Kahn, G. J. Manipon, B. D. Wilson, H. Hua, and E. J. Fetzer (2017), Horizontal and vertical distributions of mixed cloud type geometry, J. Atmos. Sci. (submitted)
  2. Kahn, B. H., G. Matheou, Q. Yue, T. Fauchez, E. J. Fetzer, M. Lebsock, J. Martins, M. M. Schreier, K. Suzuki, and J. Teixeira (2017), A satellite and reanalysis view of cloud organization, thermodynamic, and dynamic variability within the subtropical marine boundary layer, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., doi:10.5194/acp-2017-59.
  3. Chang, K.-W., T. S. L'Ecuyer, B. H. Kahn, and V. Natraj (2017), Information content from the visible to the mid-infrared for retrieving tropical ice cloud properties, J. Geophys. Res. (sub judice)
  4. Yue, Q., B. H. Kahn, E. J. Fetzer, S. Wong, R. Frey, and K. G. Meyer (2017), On the response of MODIS cloud coverage to global mean surface air temperature, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 122, 966-979, doi:10.1002/2016JD025174.
  5. Devasthale, A., J. Sedlar, B. H. Kahn, M. Tjernström, E. J. Fetzer, B. Tian, J. Teixeira, and T. S. Pagano (2016), A decade of spaceborne observations of the Arctic atmosphere: Novel insights from NASA's AIRS instrument, Bull. Amer. Met. Soc., 97, 2163-2176, doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-14-00202.1
  6. Wang, T., E. J. Fetzer, S. Wong, B. H. Kahn, and Q. Yue (2016), Interpretation of MODIS cloud images using CloudSat/CALIPSO cloud vertical profiles, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 121, doi:10.1002/2016JD025239.
  7. Wong, S., A. D. Del Genio, T. Wang, B. H. Kahn, E. J. Fetzer, and T. S. L'Ecuyer (2016), Responses of tropical ocean clouds and precipitation to the large-scale circulation: Atmospheric water budget-related phase space and dynamical regimes, J. Climate, 29, 7127-7143, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-15-0712.1.
  8. Kahn, B. H., X. Huang, G. L. Stephens, W. D. Collins, D. R. Feldman, H. Su, S. Wong, and Q. Yue (2016), ENSO regulation of far- and mid-infrared contributions to clear-sky OLR, Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, doi:10.1002/2016GL070263.
  9. Staten, P. W., B. H. Kahn, M. M. Schreier, and A. K. Heidinger (2016), Sub-pixel characterization of HIRS spectral radiances using cloud properties from AVHRR, J. Atmos. Ocean Tech., 33, 1519-1538, doi:10.1175/JTECH-D-15-0187.1.
  10. 1Stephens, G. L., B. H. Kahn, and M. Richardson (2016), The super greenhouse effect in a changing climate, J. Climate, 29, 5469-5482, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-15-0234.1.
  11. Sengupta, A., N. Cressie, B. H. Kahn, and R. Frey (2016), Predictive inference for big, spatial, non-Gaussian data: MODIS cloud data and its change-of-support, Aust. N. Z. J. Stat., 58(1), 15-45, doi:10.1111/anzs.12148.
  12. Yue, Q., B. H. Kahn, E. J. Fetzer, M. Schreier, S. Wong, X. Chen, and X. Huang (2016), Observation-based longwave cloud radiative kernels derived from the A-train, J. Climate, 29, 2023-2040, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-15-0257.1
  13. Anderson, D. C., J. M. Nicely, R. J. Salawitch, T. P. Canty, R. R. Dickerson, T. F. Hanisco, G. M. Wolfe, E. C. Apel, E. Atlas, T. Bannan, S. Bauguitte, N. J. Blake, J. F. Bresch, T. L. Campos, L. J. Carpenter, M. D. Cohen, M. Evans, R. P. Fernandez, B. H. Kahn, D. E. Kinnison, S. R. Hall, N. R. P. Harris, R. S. Hornbrook, J.-F. Lamarque, M. Le Breton, J. D. Lee, C. Percival, L. Pfister, R. B. Pierce, D. D. Riemer, A. Saiz-Lopez, B. J. B. Stunder, A. M. Thompson, K. Ullmann, A. Vaughan, and A. J. Weinheimer (2016), A pervasive role for biomass burning in tropical high ozone/low water structures, Nat. Comm., 7, doi:10.1038/ncomms10267
  14. Wu, L., H. Su, R. G. Fovell, T. J. Dunkerton, Z. Wang, and B. H. Kahn (2015), Impact of environmental moisture on tropical cyclone intensification, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 14031-14053.
  15. Kahn, B. H., M. M. Schreier, Q. Yue, E. J. Fetzer, F. W. Irion, S. Platnick, C. Wang, S. L. Nasiri, and T. S. L'Ecuyer (2015), Pixel-scale assessment and uncertainty analysis of AIRS and MODIS ice cloud optical thickness and effective radius, J. Geophys. Res., 120, doi:10.1002/2015JD023950.
  16. Naud, C. M., and B. H. Kahn (2015), Thermodynamic phase and ice cloud properties in northern hemisphere winter extratropical cyclones observed by Aqua AIRS, J. Appl. Meteor. Climatol., 54, 2283-2303, doi:10.1175/JAMC-D-15-0045.1.
  17. Lubin, D., B. H. Kahn, M. A. Lazzara, P. Rowe, and V. P. Walden (2015), Variability in AIRS-retrieved cloud amount and thermodynamic phase over west versus east Antarctica influenced by the SAM, Geophys. Res. Lett., 42, doi:10.1002/2014GL062285.
  18. Kahn, B. H., F. W. Irion, V. T. Dang, E. M. Manning, S. L. Nasiri, C. M. Naud, J. Blaisdell, M. M. Schreier, Q. Yue, K. W. Bowman, E. J. Fetzer, G. C. Hulley, K. N. Liou, D. Lubin, S. C. Ou, J. Susskind, Y. Takano, B. Tian, and J. Worden (2014), The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder Version 6 cloud products, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 399-426.
  19. Yue, Q., E. J. Fetzer, B. H. Kahn, S. Wong, G. Manipon, A. Guillaume, and B. Wilson (2013), Cloud-state dependent sampling in AIRS observations based on CloudSat cloud classification, J. Climate, 26, 8357-8377.
  20. Wu, L., H. Su, R. G. Fovell, B. Wang, J. T. Shen, B. H. Kahn, S. M. Hristova-Veleva, B. H. Lambrigtsen, E. J. Fetzer, and J. H. Jiang (2012), Relationship of environmental relative humidity with North Atlantic tropical cyclone intensity and intensification rate, Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L20809, doi:10.1029/2012GL053546.
  21. Kahn, B. H., S. L. Nasiri, M. M. Schreier, and B. A. Baum (2011), Impacts of sub-pixel cloud heterogeneity on infrared thermodynamic phase assessment, J. Geophys. Res., 116, D20201, doi:10.1029/2011JD015774.
  22. Kahn, B. H., J. Teixeira, E. J. Fetzer, A. Gettelman, S. M. Hristova-Veleva, X. Huang, A. K. Kochanski, M. Köhler, S. K. Krueger, R. Wood, and M. Zhao (2011), Temperature and water vapor variance scaling in global models: Comparisons to satellite and aircraft data, J. Atmos. Sci., 68, 2156-2168, doi:10.1175/2011JAS3737.1
  23. Schreier, M. M., B. H. Kahn, A. Eldering, D. A. Elliott, E. Fishbein, F. W. Irion, and T. S. Pagano (2010), Radiance comparisons of MODIS and AIRS using spatial response information, J. Atmos. Ocean. Tech., 27, 1331-1342, doi: 10.1175/2010JTECHA1424.1.
  24. Kahn, B. H., and J. Teixeira (2009), A global climatology of temperature and water vapor variance scaling from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder, J. Climate, 22, 5558-5576, doi: 10.1175/2009JCLI2934.1.
  25. Kahn, B. H., A. Gettelman, A. Eldering, E. J. Fetzer, and C. K. Liang (2009), Cloudy and clear sky relative humidity distributions in the upper troposphere observed by the A-train, doi:10.1029/2009JD011738, J. Geophys. Res., 114, D00H02, doi:10.1029/2009JD011738.
  26. Nasiri, S. L., and B. H. Kahn (2008), Limitations of bispectral infrared cloud phase determination and potential for improvement, J. Appl. Meteor. Climatol., 47, 2895-2910.
  27. Kahn, B. H., and D. M. Sinton (2008), A preferred scale for warm core instability in a non-convective moist basic state, J. Atmos. Sci., 65, 2907-2921.
  28. Kahn, B. H., C. K. Liang, A. Eldering, A. Gettelman, Q. Yue, and K. N. Liou (2008), Tropical thin cirrus and relative humidity observed by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 8, 1501-1518.
  29. Kahn, B. H., M. T. Chahine, G. L. Stephens, G. G. Mace, R. Marchand, Z. Wang, C. D. Barnet, A. Eldering, R. E. Holz, R. E. Kuehn, and D. G. Vane (2008), Cloud-type comparisons of AIRS, CloudSat, and CALIPSO cloud height and amount, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 8, 1231-1248.
  30. Kahn, B. H., E. Fishbein, S. L. Nasiri, A. Eldering, E. J. Fetzer, M. J. Garay, and S.-Y. Lee (2007), The radiative consistency of Atmospheric Infrared Sounder and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer cloud retrievals, J. Geophys. Res., 112, D09201, doi:10.1029/2006JD007486.
  31. Kahn, B. H., A. Eldering, A. J. Braverman, E. J. Fetzer, J. H. Jiang, E. Fishbein, and D. L. Wu (2007), Toward the characterization of upper tropospheric clouds using Atmospheric Infrared Sounder and Microwave Limb Sounder observations, J. Geophys. Res., 112, D05202, doi:10.1029/2006JD007336.
  32. Kahn, B. H., K. N. Liou, S. -Y. Lee, E. F. Fishbein, S. DeSouza-Machado, A. Eldering, E. J. Fetzer, S. E. Hannon, and L. L. Strow (2005), Nighttime cirrus detection using Atmospheric Infrared Sounder channels and total column water vapor, J. Geophys. Res., 110, doi:10.1029/2004JD005430.
  33. Kahn, B. H., A. Eldering, M. Ghil, S. Bordoni, and S. A. Clough (2004), Sensitivity analysis of cirrus cloud properties from high-resolution infrared spectra. Part I: Methodology and synthetic cirrus, J. Climate, 17, 4856-4870.
  34. Kahn, B. H., A. Eldering, S. A. Clough, E. J. Fetzer, E. F. Fishbein, M. R. Gunson, S. -Y. Lee, P. F. Lester, and V. J. Realmuto (2003), Near micron-sized cirrus cloud particles in high-resolution infrared spectra: An orographic case study, Geophys. Res. Lett., 30(8), 1441, doi:10.1029/2003GL016909.
  35. Kahn, B. H., A. Eldering, F. W. Irion, F. P. Mills, B. Sen, and M. R. Gunson (2002), Cloud identification in Atmospheric Trace Molecule Spectroscopy infrared occultation measurements, Appl. Opt., 41, 2368-2380.

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