Skip Navigation

Linda Forster

Photo of Linda Forster


4800 Oak Grove Drive

Pasadena, CA 91109

Curriculum Vitae:

Click here

Member of:

Aerosols And Clouds


Linda Forster's research focuses on satellite and ground-based remote sensing of clouds. She is developing retrieval methods of cloud properties using radiative transfer modeling. In her current Postdoctoral project she is working on methods to advance 3D tomographic cloud reconstruction towards using MISR multi-angle observations from space. This project is a collaboration between Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) Munich and JPL.

She received her Ph.D. in Meteorology from LMU Munich where she developed a retrieval to infer ice crystal properties in thin cirrus clouds using observations of halo displays. Prior to her graduate project she studied effects of 3D photon transport on the radiative forcing of contrails and investigated ground-based polarimetric remote sensing to retrieve water cloud optical properties.


  • Ph.D. in Meteorology, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) Munich, Germany, 2013 - 2017
  • M.Sc. in Meteorology, LMU Munich, 2009 - 2012
  • B.Sc. in Physics, LMU Munich, 2006 - 2009

Professional Experience

  • Postdoctoral Fellow JPL/LMU 2018 - present
  • Postdoctoral Research Assistant LMU 2017-2018
  • Graduate Research and Teaching Assistant, LMU Munich, Germany, 2013-2017
  • Visiting Scientist at NASA GISS, New York City, 2012

Research Interests

  • Satellite and ground-based remote sensing of clouds and aerosols
  • 1D and 3D radiative transfer modeling including polarization
  • Instrument design and characterization
  • Machine learning

Selected Awards

  • Outgoing LMU Research Fellowship 2018
  • Amelia Earhart International Fellowship 2015
  • Amelia Earhart Award 2014

Selected Publications

  1. Davis, A. B., Forster, L., Diner, D. J., and Mayer, B., (submitted): Toward cloud tomography from space using MISR and MODIS: The physics of image formation for opaque convective clouds. J. Atmos. Sci. Preprint available at
  2. Stephens, B., Bony, S., Farrell, D. and coauthors (incl. Forster, L.) (in press): EUREC4A. Earth Syst. Sci. Data. Preprint available at
  3. Forster, L., Davis, A. B., Diner, D. J., and Mayer, B., 2021: Toward cloud tomography from space using MISR and MODIS: Locating the "veiled core" in opaque convective clouds, J. Atmos. Sci., 78 (1), 155-166.
  4. Yun, K. C. Choi, R. Alimo, A. B. Davis, L. Forster, A. Rahmani, M. Adil, and R. Madani, 2020: Multi-Agent Motion Planning using Deep Learning for Space Applications, AIAA ASCEND Nov 16-18,
  5. Forster, L., Seefeldner, M., Baumgartner, A., Kölling, T., and Mayer, B., 2020: Ice crystal characterization in cirrus clouds II: radiometric characterization of HaloCam for the quantitative analysis of halo displays, Atmos. Meas. Tech., 13, 3977-3991,
  6. Grob, H., Emde, C., Wiegner, M., Seefeldner, M., Forster, L., and Mayer, B., 2020: The polarized Sun and sky radiometer SSARA: design, calibration, and application for ground-based aerosol remote sensing, Atmos. Meas. Tech., 13, 239-258,
  7. Forster, L. et al., 2017: Ice Crystal Characterization in Cirrus Clouds: a Sun-Tracking Camera System and Automated Detection Algorithm for Halo Displays. Atmos. Meas. Tech., 10 (7), 2499- 2516,
  8. Voigt, C. and coauthors (incl. L. Forster), 2016: ML-CIRRUS - The airborne experiment on natural cirrus and contrail cirrus with the high-altitude long-range research aircraft HALO. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 98, 271-288,
  9. Forster, L., Emde, C., Unterstrasser, S., and Mayer, B., 2012: Effects of Three-Dimensional Photon Transport on the Radiative Forcing of Realistic Contrails. J. Atmos. Sci., 69 (7), 2243-2255,