Dr Emma Howard, recent doctoral graduate from the African Climate team in SoGE and member of the UMFULA research project, has been awarded the Royal Meteorological Society's prestigious Malcolm Walker prize.
Emma's research focused on southern African climate, long regarded as one of the problem climates of the planet. A renewed focus has fallen on the region given the projected drying for the latter half of the twenty-first century simulated in climate models. Our understanding of that projected drying is constrained given that it takes place at the understudied southern edge of the tropical convective belt.
The award notes that Emma's research, in particular her novel insights, methods and originality, coupled with the resurrection of concepts long forgotten, has accelerated our grasp of climate dynamics for a key region of the planet.
Taking the view that connecting the meteorology and climate of the region would be the most profitable and revealing approach, Emma decided to work on the dynamics and characteristics of the circulation along the tropical edge. A key focus of Emma's work has addressed dynamical meteorology of tropical lows and a feature called the Congo Air Boundary.
Recent papers led by Emma include:
- Howard, E. and Washington, R. (2020) Tracing Future Spring and Summer Drying in Southern Africa to Tropical Lows and the Congo Air Boundary. Journal of Climate, 33(14): 6205-6228.
- Howard, E. and Washington, R. (2019) Drylines in Southern Africa: Rediscovering the Congo Air Boundary. Journal of Climate, 32(23): 8223-8242.
- Howard, E., Washington, R. and Hodges, K. (2019) Tropical Lows in southern Africa: Tracks, rainfall contributions, and the role of ENSO. Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmospheres, 124(21): 11009-11032.
- Howard, E. and Washington, R. (2018) Characterizing the Synoptic Expression of the Angola Low. Journal of Climate, 31, 7147-7165.