[image-51]David Raymond is an atmospheric physicist at the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology. He is a principal investigator studying the formation of tropical cyclones, specifically the transition in which tropical cyclones start to spin up for the Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel, or HS3 mission.
Raymond uses HS3 data to look at physical processes in the troposphere to learn if cyclone spin up occurs as a result of processes occurring at low-level altitudes or mid-level altitudes. Flying at altitudes above 60,000 feet, the Global Hawk aircraft in the HS3 mission is equipped with dropsondes: small cylindrical objects made of cardboard released from the aircraft. Dropsondes contain a GPS tracking device and sensors for temperature, humidity and pressure. Raymond uses data from dropsondes to create moist convection models of tropical cyclones, or models that incorporate important factors such as cloud and water condensation patterns that lead to severe weather conditions.
Raymond became interested in tropical cyclones 20 years after graduate school when he worked in a field project called TexMex, or Tropical Experiment in Mexico, in Acapulco, Mexico in 1991, and has been studying them ever since. He has worked with the National Science Foundation and Naval Research studying the formation of tropical cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons. He also researches thunderstorms, the coupled interaction between the ocean and atmosphere in the eastern tropical Pacific and how convection of cumulus clouds is controlled.
Raymond holds a B.S. in physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a Ph.D. in physics from Stanford University. He acted as Assistant Meteorologist with the Cloud Physics Observatory in Department of Meteorology at the University of Hawaii for three years before moving to New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology as a university researcher and physics professor.