Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session


Quasi-balanced Circulations in Oceans and Atmospheres (12.803) or Dynamics of the Atmosphere (12.810).

Assigned Readings

Paluch, Ilga. "The Entrainment Mechanism in Colorado Cumuli." Journal of the Atmospheric Science 36, no. 12 (1979): 2467–78.

Romps, David, and Zhiming Kuang. "Do Undiluted Convective Plumes Exist in the Upper Tropical Troposphere?" Journal of the Atmospheric Science 67, no. 2 (2010): 468–84.


  1. Radiative-Convective Equilibrium
  2. The Zonally-Averaged Circulation
  3. Asymmetric Steady Circulations
  4. Interannual Fluctuations of the Walker Circulation - ENSO
  5. Intraseasonal Oscillations
  6. Higher Frequency Disturbances
  7. Tropical Cyclones


The course grade is based upon problem sets, a term paper, and class participation.