Chris Golaz

Staff Scientist
Atmospheric, Earth, and Energy Division
Phone: +19254236912


  • Ph.D., Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, 2002.
  • M.S., Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, 1997.
  • B.S., Physics, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland, 1995.

Professional Experience

  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA (2015-10 to present).
  • NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Princeton, NJ (2005-12 to 2015-10).
  • US Naval Research Laboratory, Marine Meteorology Division, Monterey, CA (2002-08 to 2005-11).

Research Interests

My research interests evolve around developing numerical (computer) models to better simulate and understand the weather and climate of our planet with a particular emphasis on clouds. Over the years, I have worked with models spanning a wide range of scales and applications; from relatively simple models that can run on a laptop computer to complex Earth System Models requiring High Perfomance Computing resources. Example of models include:

  • Single-column (1-D) model to simulate atmosphric boundary layer turbulence and clouds (later known as CLUBB).
  • Large eddy simulations (LES) models capable of resolving (3-D) boundary layer turbulence and clouds in a limited domain (e.g. RAMS and COAMPS).
  • Global atmosphere models (e.g. GFDL-AM3).
  • Fully coupled physical Earth System Models (e.g. E3SM).


For a comprehensive list of publications, please refer to:



Google Scholar:

Selected Publications

  • Golaz, J.-C., P. M. Caldwell, L. P. Van Roekel, et al., 2019: The DOE E3SM coupled model version 1: Overview and evaluation at standard resolution. J. Adv. Model. Earth Syst., doi:10.1029/2018MS001603.
  • Zhao, M., J.-C. Golaz, I. M. Held, et al., 2018: The GFDL global atmosphere and land model AM4.0/LM4.0: 1. simulation characteristics with prescribed SSTs. J. Adv. Model. Earth Syst.,10 (3), 691–734, doi:10.1002/2017ms001208.
  • Guo, H., J.-C. Golaz, L. J. Donner, B. Wyman, M. Zhao, and P. Ginoux, 2015: CLUBB as a unified cloud parameterization: Opportunities and challenges. Geophys. Res. Lett., 42 (11), 4540–4547, doi:10.1002/2015GL063672.
  • Golaz, J.-C., L. W. Horowitz, and H. Levy II, 2013: Cloud tuning in a coupled climate model: impact on 20th century warming. Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 1–6, doi:10.1002/grl.50232.
  • Golaz, J.-C., M. Salzmann, L. J. Donner, L. W. Horowitz, Y. Ming, and M. Zhao, 2011: Sensitivity of the aerosol indirect effect to subgrid variability in the cloud parameterization of the GFDL Atmosphere General Circulation Model AM3. J. Climate, 24, 3145–3160, doi:10.1175/2010JCLI3945.1.
  • Donner, L. J., B. L. Wyman, R. S. Hemler, et al, 2011: The dynamical core, physical parameterizations, and basic simulation characteristics of the atmospheric component AM3 of the GFDL Global Coupled Model CM3. J. Climate, 24:3484–3519, doi:10.1175/2011JCLI3955.1.
  • Golaz, J.-C., S. Wang, J. D. Doyle, and J. M. Schmidt, 2005: COAMPS-LES Model evaluation and analysis of second and third moment vertical velocity budgets. Bound.-Layer Meteor., 116, 487–517, doi:10.1007/s10546-004-7300-5.
  • Golaz, J.-C., V. E. Larson, and W. R. Cotton, 2002: A PDF-based model for boundary layer clouds. Part I: Method and model description. J. Atmos. Sci., 59 (24), 3540–3551, doi:10.1175/1520-0469(2002)059<3540:APBMFB>2.0.CO;2.