A note: This represents the view of a DOE funded scientist, not the Department or any of its programs.
I did not have an iPhone back in 2009 when I attended my very first ARM Science Team meeting in Louisville, Kentucky. So I have been unable to find any pictures of the event. I did find my old presentation I gave! I arrived in Ky after flight from Australia which got delayed and an unexpected stop over in LA. I arrived barely in time to give a talk on vertical motions in storms!
That meeting was in spring (in the USA) and now we are here in fall 13 odd years later and next week will be first in person ARM-ASR science team meeting since the pandemic started in the USA. I used to work for the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and now I live in Chicago and work for Argonne National Laboratory and my work is a lot closer to ARM’s mission.
I am excited to be back at this meeting in person (in Rockville, Maryland). This will be my first “Programmatic” meeting since the Pandemic began. What is a programmatic meeting? you ask. Well funding bodies like programs within the Department of Energy’s Office of Science will provide support to universities, laboratories etc the same way programs in, say, the National Science Foundation will but they are more mission driven. Programs, like the Atmospheric Systems Research, or ASR, program, need those funded by them to work together.
The science ASR seeks to tackle (making our simulations of the planet more accurate and useful for the nation) can not be achieved by any one investigator. ASR forms working groups and special task forces and these groups meet, along with those who manage the programs, imaginatively called… wait for it… Program Managers, meet once a year. These meetings have many purposes but three are: To allow for DOE supported and associated scientists to understand the needs of the programs (ASR and the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement, or ARM program) and closely aligned programs, to allow the program managers listen and gain a deeper understanding of the breadth of science their programs fund and to allow everyone to interact, learn and forge new collaborations.
It is an exhausting week. In some years I have had days containing 7am breakfast meetings right up to 8pm science, dinner and a beer meetings. It is the one time all those I work with are in one physical place and it presents unique opportunities. I joke with Louise that it is the only domestic meeting I come back from jetlagged.
The ARM ASR meeting coming up next week is special. It is the first in person meeting in three years and it has been an eventful three years. Much has happened in all our lives, professionally and personally. There will be a lot of catching up. Those who read my blog know of the TRACER field campaign. That has been planned and executed all in this time. I will be heading to the meeting with excitement and an open mind, 13 years after that excited young man traveled to Louisville and his world changed.