Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan


William Kuhn

William R Kuhn

Professor Emeritus

Phone: (734) 936-0493
Fax: (734) 936-0503


Ph.D., Astro-geophysics, University of Colorado Postdoctoral appointment, National Center for Atmospheric Research

Specializations and Research Interests

Dr. Kuhn's early research concerned the radiative properties of the Earth's upper atmosphere, how infrared radiation is transferred in a medium in non-local thermodynamic equilibrium. He was one of the participants in the Climatic Impact Assessment Program to evaluate the potential effect on climate of supersonic transports in the early 1970s. In the mid- and late-70s, his research was primarily devoted to studies of planetary atmospheres, e.g., how photochemistry influences the composition of Jupiter's atmosphere, the climate of Mars early in its geologic history, and how the Martian environment would affect, and be influenced by, terrestrial organisms. In the 80s, Dr. Kuhn's research was devoted to studies of Earth's climate with relatively simple radiative convective models but also the NCAR Community Climate Models. Most of his research in the 90s concerned the climate of the very early Earth extending back 4 billion years ago when solar radiation, atmospheric composition, land fraction and rotation rate were much different than they are today. His present research concerns the effect of the changes in the amount of non radiative gases in the atmosphere on temperature and the latitudinal temperature gradient.

Honors, Awards and Accomplishments

* Chair, Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences Department, 1980-1990 * Recipient of several teaching awards

Updated: 2010-06-04