Dr. Nicole Mölders

Since 1988, Nicole Mölders been involved in numerical modeling of the physics and chemistry of the atmosphere. She has used mesoscale models to investigate human and natural (e.g. fire, volcanic eruptions, anthropogenic emissions, land-use changes) impacts on weather, air quality and climate. In close cooperation with hydrologists and geologists she coupled a hydrologic and meteorological model and developed an integrative hydrometeorological model. She worked with computer scientists on optimizing chemistry transport models for parallel computers. She led several projects to study ground water recharge, dry deposition of reactive atmospheric trace gases, water availability under changed climate conditions, the impact of land-use changes on evapotranspiration, cloud and precipitation formation, and impacts of various emission sources on air quality and weather. From 1999 to 2001 she was honored as a Heisenberg Fellow for Physical Hydrology, a prestigious award conferred by the DFG. Her scientific career in America dates back to 1989, when she worked as a visiting graduate student at the ASRC of the State University of New York (SUNY) at Albany. In 2000, she worked at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) at Boulder, Colorado. In 2001, she joined the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF). At UAF, she continues her research direction with special focus on air quality issues of the Arctic and continues teaching activities. Since 1995, in Germany and the United States, she has taught cloud physics, satellite meteorology, physical hydrometeorology, paleoclimatology, parameterization of hydrometerological processes, numerical modeling and parameterization methods, mesoscale dynamics, introduction to computational meteorology and introduction to atmospheric sciences. She is the author of Land-use and Land-cover change - Impact on Climate and Air Quality and one of the authors of the textbook Lectures in Meteorology. She wants to contribute to improving numerical models in order to simulate the water, energy and trace gas cycles appropriately. Doing so will allow policy makers to use model outcomes to assess future water resources, water and air quality and to make reasonable decisions to meet the challenges of the future.

Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

Courses Taught

ATM F401/601, CHEM F601 Introduction to Atmospheric Sciences
ATM F425/625 Physical Hydrometeorology
ATM F678 Mesoscale Dynamics
ATM F662 Numerical Modeling and Parametrization Methods
ATM F688 Atmospheric Sciences Informal Seminar
ATM F621 Introduction to Computational Meteorology

Select Publications



Mesoscale Dynamics, Air Quality, Modeling, Big Data, Physical Hydrometeorology


  • Editor of Atmosphere
  • editor of climate
  • advisory board of Springer Climate Briefs
  • UCAR member representative
  • Unidata Strategic Advisory Committee
  • UCAR Governance Task Group
  • GI Atmospheric Science Group head
  • Keith Mather Library Committee



  • 2018 Best Faculty Paper Award (2019)
  • Best Fairbanks Stylist Award (2019)
  • Sunshine Award (2019)
  • EPIC (2018-2019)
  • NASA EPSCoR Travel award to the TIM workshop at Goddard Space Flight Center (2018)
  • QM certificate of successful completion (2017)
  • iTeach2 (2017)
  • College of Natural Science and Mathematics Outstanding Teaching Award (2016)
  • iTeach (2016)
  • Travel award by International Arctic Science Committee (2013)
  • Recognition by CNSM for serving as chair for more than eight years (2013)
  • College of Natural Science and Mathematics Teaching Award (2011)
  • College of Natural Science and Mathematics Faculty Bonus (2009)
  • Outstanding Graduate Student Mentoring and Advising Award, College of Natural Science and Mathematics (2008-2009)
  • Travel Award to attend the Head and Chair Workshop for Future Departments in Geosciences at Carleton College, Northfield, Minnesota (2007)
  • NSF travel award to attend OPP's Antarctic New Investigators Workshop (2006)
  • Tenure (2004)
  • Geophysical Institute Merit Bonus for Excellence in soil moisture research (2003)
  • Heisenberg Professor (1999)
  • Scholarship of the DFG for habilitation (1996)
  • Scholarship of the University of Clermont-Ferrand, France (1985-1986)
  • Travel award of the DAAD (1985)