current photo of Mark Z. Jacobson
Mark Z. Jacobson


Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Director, Atmosphere/Energy Program
Senior Fellow, Woods Institute for the Environment
Senior Fellow, Precourt Institute for Energy

CLICK HERE FOR PROGRAM IN ATMOSPHERE / ENERGY



B.S. Civil Engineering, B.A. Economics, and M.S. Environmental Engineering (1988) Stanford University
M.S. (1991) and Ph.D. (1994) Atmospheric Science, University of California at Los Angeles

Scientific Background

The main goal of Jacobson’s research is to understand better severe atmospheric problems, such as air pollution and global warming, and develop and analyze large-scale clean-renewable energy solutions to them.

To address this goal, he has developed and applied three-dimensional atmosphere-biosphere-ocean computer models and solvers to simulate air pollution, weather, climate, and renewable energy. In 1993-4, he developed the world’s first computer model to treat the mutual feedback to weather and climate of both air pollution gases and particles, and in 2001, the first coupled air-pollution-weather-climate model to telescope from the global to urban scale.

In 2000, he applied this model to discover that black carbon, the main component of soot pollution particles, might be the second-leading cause of global warming in terms of radiative forcing, after carbon dioxide. This and subsequent papers provided the original scientific basis for several laws and regulations on black carbon emission controls worldwide. His findings that carbon dioxide domes over cities and carbon dioxide buildup since preindustrial times have enhanced air pollution mortality through its feedback to particles and ozone served as a scientific basis for the Environmental Protection Agency’s 2009 approval of the first U.S. regulation of carbon dioxide (the California waiver).

With respect to solvers, in 1993, he developed the world’s fastest ordinary differential equation solver in a three-dimensional model for a given level of accuracy. He subsequently developed solvers for cloud and aerosol coagulation, breakup, condensation/evaporation, freezing, dissolution, chemical equilibrium, and lightning; air-sea exchange; ocean chemistry; greenhouse gas absorption; and surface processes.

With respect to energy, in 2001 he published a paper in Science examining the ability of the U.S. to convert a large fraction of its energy to wind power. In 2005, his group developed the first world wind map based on data alone. His students subsequently published papers on reducing the variability of wind energy by interconnecting wind farms; on integrating solar, wind, geothermal, and hydroelectric power into the grid; and on wave power.

In 2009, he coauthored a plan, featured on the cover of Scientific American, to power the world for all purposes with wind, water, and sunlight (WWS). In 2010, he appeared in a TED debate rated as the sixth all-time science and technology TED talk. In 2011, he cofounded The Solutions Project, a group that combines science, business, and culture to develop and implement science based clean-energy plans for states and countries. In 2013, his group developed individual WWS energy plans for each of the 50 United States.

To date, he has published two textbooks of two editions each and over 140 peer-reviewed journal articles. He has testified three times for the U.S. Congress. Nearly a thousand researchers have used computer models he has developed. In 2005, he received the American Meteorological Society Henry G. Houghton Award for "significant contributions to modeling aerosol chemistry and to understanding the role of soot and other carbon particles on climate." In 2013, he received an American Geophysical Union Ascent Award for "his dominating role in the development of models to identify the role of black carbon in climate change" and the Global Green Policy Design Award for the "design of analysis and policy framework to envision a future powered by renewable energy." He has also served on the Energy Efficiency and Renewables advisory committee to the U.S. Secretary of Energy and was invited to talk about his world and U.S. clean-energy plans on the Late Show with David Letterman.

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
The Jerry Yang and Akiko Yamazaki Environment and Energy (Y2E2) Building

473 Via Ortega, Room 397
Stanford University
Stanford, CA 94305, USA
Tel: (650) 723-6836
Fax: (650) 723-7058
Email: jacobson@stanford.edu
Follow @mzjacobson

Curriculum Vita

Current PhD Graduate Students:

Graduate Student Alumni:

Current Postdoctoral Researchers :

Postdoctoral Researcher Alumni:

Courses taught Public online course Clean Energy Plans for 50 States and the World and The Solutions Project Testimony, TED, and Letterman

Textbooks:

book cover of "Atmospheric Modeling"
Fundamentals of Atmospheric Modeling (1999)

book cover of "Fundamentals of Atmospheric Modeling, 2nd ed"

Fundamentals of Atmospheric Modeling, 2d ed. (2005)

book cover of "Atmospheric Pollution: History, Science, and Regulation"

Atmospheric Pollution: History, Science, and Regulation (2002)

book cover of "Air Pollution and Global Warming: History, Science, and Solutions"

Air Pollution and Global Warming: History, Science, and Solutions (2012)

Some papers organized by topic (please see Curriculum Vitae for full list)

  1. Energy resources and effects on the atmosphere
    1. Study on wind versus coal
    2. Studies on world and regional wind energy resources and transmission
    3. Effects of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles versus gasoline and hybrid vehicles on air pollution, climate, and stratospheric ozone
    4. Effecst on photchemical smog of converting the U.S. fleet of gasoline vehicles to modern diesel vehicles
    5. Effects of ethanol (E85) versus gasoline vehicles on air pollution and climate
    6. Review of solutions to global warming, air pollution, and energy security
    7. Roadmaps to power states, countries, and the world for all purposes with wind, water, and sunlight (WWS)
    8. Maximum world and land wind potential at the surface and in the jet streams and the effects of large wind farms on the atmosphere
    9. California and east coast offshore wind energy potential
    10. Combining intermittent renewables to match time-varying electric power demand
    11. Combining wind and wave power
    12. Taming hurricanes with arrays of offshore wind turbines

  2. High-resolution aerosol evolution near the point of emission
    1. Evolution of nanoparticle size and mixing state near the point of emission
    2. Enhanced coagulation due to evaporation and its effect on nanoparticle evolution

  3. Effects of black and brown carbon and other aerosol constituent on regional climate, air pollution, and UV radiation.
    1. Development and application of a new air pollution modeling system. Part III: Aerosol-phase simulations
    2. Development and application of a new air pollution modeling system. Part II: Aerosol-module structure and design
    3. Studying the effects of aerosols on vertical photolysis over an urban airshed
    4. Isolating nitrated and aeromatic aerosols and nitrated aromatic gases as sources of ultraviolet light absorption
    5. Effects of aerosols on California and South Coast climate
    6. Wind reduction by aerosol particles

  4. Effects on climate and air pollution of soil moisture, irrigation, agriculture, and urban surfaces
    1. Effect of soil moisture on temperatures, winds, and pollutant concentrations in Los Angeles
    2. The effects of agriculture on climate and air pollution in California
    3. Effects of urban surfaces and white roofs on global and regional climate

  5. Studies of the effects of carbon dioxide, other gases, aerosol particles, and radionuclides on health and climate
    1. Development and application of a new air pollution modeling system. Part I: Gas-phase simulations
    2. Development and application of a new air pollution modeling system. Part III: Aerosol-phase simulations
    3. GATOR-GCMM: 2. A study of day- and nighttime ozone layers aloft, ozone in national parks, and weather during the SARMAP field campaign.
    4. The effect on photochemical smog of converting the U.S. fleet of gasoline vehicles to modern diesel vehicles.
    5. On the causal link between carbon dioxide and pollution mortality.
    6. The enhancement of local air pollution by urban CO2 domes.
    7. The influence of future anthropogenic emissions on climate, natural emissions, and air quality
    8. Short-term effects of controlling fossil-fuel soot, biofuel soot and gases, and methane on climate, the Arctic, and health
    9. Worldwide health effects of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident
  1. Global direct radiative forcing of black and brown carbon and other aerosol constituents
    1. A physically-based treatment of elemental carbon optics: Implications for global direct forcing of aerosols
    2. Strong radiative heating due to the mixing state of black carbon in atmospheric aerosols
    3. Global direct radiative forcing due to multicomponent anthropogenic and natural aerosols

  2. Studies of the evolution of the mixing state and radiative properties of aerosols and clouds
    1. Modeling coagulation among particles of different composition and size
    2. Strong radiative heating due to the mixing state of black carbon in atmospheric aerosols
    3. Analysis of aerosol interactions with numerical techniques for solving coagulation, nucleation, condensation, dissolution, and reversible chemistry among multiple size distribution
    4. Development of mixed-phase clouds from multiple aerosol size distributions and the effect of the clouds on aerosol removal
    5. Evolution of nanoparticle size and mixing state near the point of emission
    6. Enhanced coagulation due to evaporation and its effect on nanoparticle evolution
    7. Climate response of soot, accounting for feedback to cloud absorption
    8. Cloud absorption effects and boomerang curves: Optical properties of black carbon, tar balls, soil dust in clouds and aerosols
  1. Effects of black and brown carbon and greenhouse gases on global and regional climate and atmospheric composition
    1. Control of fossil-fuel particulate black carbon and organic matter, possibly the most effective method of slowing global warming
    2. Impacts of biomass burning, anthropogenic moisture and heat fluxes, and all anthropogenic emissions on global climate
    3. Climate response of soot, accounting for feedback to snow and sea ice albedo and emissivity
    4. Climate response of soot, accounting for feedback to cloud absorption
    5. The influence of future anthropogenic emissions on climate, natural emissions, and air quality
    6. Short-term effects of controlling fossil-fuel soot, biofuel soot and gases, and methane on climate, the Arctic, and health
    7. Effects of aircraft emissions from all individual commercial flights worldwide on climate, contrails, and air pollution

  2. Numerical methods and climate-weather-pollution model development
    1. SMVGEAR: A sparse-matrix, vectorized Gear code for atmospheric models
    2. Modeling coagulation among particles of different composition and size
    3. Simulating condensational growth, evaporation, and coagulation of aerosols using a combined moving and stationary size grid
    4. Simulating equilibrium within aerosols and nonequilibrium between gases and aerosols
    5. Development and application of a new air pollution modeling system. Part II: Aerosol-module structure and design
    6. Computation of global photochemistry with SMVGEAR II.
    7. Numerical techniques to solve condensational and dissolutional growth equations when growth is coupled to reversible reactions
    8. Improvement of SMVGEAR II on vector and scalar machines through absolute error tolerance control
    9. Studying the effect of calcium and magnesium on size-distributed nitrate and ammonium with EQUISOLV II
    10. GATOR-GCMM: A global-through urban scale air pollution and weather forecast model. 1. Model design and treatment of subgrid soil, vegetation, roads, rooftops, water, sea ice, and snow
    11. Analysis of aerosol interactions with numerical techniques for solving coagulation, nucleation, condensation, dissolution, and reversible chemistry among multiple size distributions
    12. Development of mixed-phase clouds from multiple aerosol size distributions and the effect of the clouds on aerosol removal
    13. A refined method of parameterizing absorption coefficients among multiple gases simultaneously from line-by-line data
    14. Studying ocean acidification with conservative, stable numerical schemes for nonequilibrium air-ocean exchange and ocean equilibrium chemistry
    15. A solution to the problem of non equilibrium acid/base gas-particle transfer at long time step
    16. Numerical solution to drop coalescence/breakup with a volume-conserving, positive-definite, and unconditionally-stable scheme.
    17. The global-through-urban 3-D simulation of near-explicit gas photochemistry

Features of GATOR-GCMOM, the model used for the above studies



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