Texas Tech University

Chris Weiss

Assistant Professor of Atmospheric Science
Department of Geosciences


Phone: (806) 834-4712

Fax: (806) 742-3446


MS 41053
Lubbock, TX 79409-1053

Current CV: Chris Weiss CV

Dr. Weiss hails from the state of Michigan, where he gained a fond appreciation of the weather as a child. After studying Atmospheric Science at the University of Michigan for his undergraduate major, he obtained his Masters and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Oklahoma, with a primary focus on the dynamics of drylines, particularly as related to the initiation of thunderstorms.

Since starting his position with Texas Tech University in 2004, Dr. Weiss has been involved in many field campaigns focused on the improved understanding of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. He brought StickNet and TTUKa mobile Doppler radar technology to the field in 2009 and 2010 for the Verification of the Origin of Rotation in Tornadoes Experiment (VORTEX2), and is currently involved in the planning of two field projects, one improving the prediction of tornadoes in the southeastern U.S., and another aimed at using drone technology to sample severe thunderstorms in key locations to improve their fundamental predictability.


  • B.S., Atmospheric Oceanic and Space Sciences - University of Michigan, 1997
  • M.S., Meteorology - University of Oklahoma, 2000
  • Ph.D., Meteorology - University of Oklahoma, 2004

Research Interests:

  • Severe thunderstorms,
  • Tornado genesis and structure,
  • Drylines and convection initiation,
  • Radar meteorology

Recent Funded Research Projects:

  • Principal Investigator, "VORTEX-SE: Improving Understanding and Predictability of Tornadic Storms in the Southeastern U.S. Using Intensive Observations and High-Resolution Modeling", 2015-2017, $249,942 / 2 yrs.
  • Co-principal Investigator, "NRI: Collaborative Research: Targeted Observation of Severe Local Storms Using Aerial Robots", 2015-2018, $356,246 / 3 yrs.
  • Co-principal Investigator, "Development of Probabilistic and Sensitivity-Based Forecast Tools to Improve High-Impact Forecasting Guidance at the NWS", National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Collaborative Science, Technology, and Applied Research (CSTAR) Program, 2014-2017, $369,333 / 3 yrs.
  • Co-principal Investigator, "Energy-Aware Aerial Systems for Persistent Sampling and Surveillance", Air Force Office of Scientific Research, 2012-2015, $446,052/3 yrs.

Recent Publications:

  • Beck, J. R., C. C. Weiss, 2013: Low-level baroclinity and vorticity within a numerically-simulated supercell thunderstorm. Mon. Wea. Rev., 141, 649-669.
  • Bodine, D. J., R. D. Palmer, C. J. Fulton, H. B. Bluestein, T. Maruyama, and C. C. Weiss, 2015: Mobile radar observations of debris loading in tornadoes and dust devils. Mon. Wea. Rev. (submitted)
  • Emory, A. E., C. Liu, G. Heymsfield, G. Jenkins, C. C. Weiss, 2015: Understanding what can be resolved with polar-orbiting satellite platforms for fast evolving tropical convective systems. J. Geophys. Res. (submitted)
  • Luo, J., D. Liang, and C. C. Weiss, 2014: Reconstruction of the near-surface tornado wind field from observed building damage., Wind and Structures, 20, 389-404.
  • Skinner, P. S., C. C. Weiss, M. M. French, H. B. Bluestein, P. M. Markowski, and Y. P. Richardson, 2014: VORTEX2 observations of a low-level mesocyclone with multiple internal rear-flank downdraft momentum surges in the 18 May 2010 Dumas, Texas, supercell. Mon. Wea. Rev., 142, 2935-2960.
  • Skinner, P. S., C. C. Weiss, L. J. Wicker, C. K. Potvin, and D. C. Dowell, 2015: Forcing mechanisms for an internal rear-flank downdraft momentum surge in the 18 May 2010 Dumas, Texas supercell. Mon. Wea. Rev. (in press)
  • Weiss, C. C., D. C. Dowell, J. L. Schroeder, P. S. Skinner, A. E. Reinhart, P. M. Markowski, and Y. P. Richardson, 2015: A comparison of near-surface buoyancy and baroclinity across three VORTEX2 supercell intercepts. Mon. Wea. Rev., 143, 2736-2753.