Position: Professor and Master, Physical Sciences Collegiate Division
Phone: (773) 702-3237
Email: frederic at uchicago.edu
Office #: Hinds Geophysical Sciences, Room 505
My research addresses aspects of atmospheric radiation and energetics with emphasis on local or regional spatial scales and short, policy-relevant time scales. Much of my past work has centered on atmospheric optical properties and radiative transfer in the ultraviolet and visible portions of the solar spectrum. Dissertation topics of my recent Ph.D. students have included (1) modeling the influence of particulate matter and clouds on the propagation of sunlight through the troposphere, (2) analyses of decadal-scale changes in ultraviolet radiation levels received at high latitudes of the Southern Hemisphere, and most recently (3) analyses of ground-based solar ultraviolet irradiances measured under cloudy skies in Chicago. The last of these studies confirmed that the attenuation of sunlight associated with thick clouds is wavelength dependent and that the magnitude and spectral character of this attenuation are consistent with absorption by tropospheric ozone located in the interstitial air of the clouds.
A new direction, that now dominates my research, focuses on the energetics of urban microclimates. Ongoing research involves acquiring and analyzing data for solar and terrestrial radiation and meteorological variables obtained in a variety of urban environments. The combination of this dataset with a statistics-based energy balance model of the urban surface allows inferring information about the flux of sensible heat, thermal conduction in the surface layer, and evaporative cooling. Recent measurements conducted near the base of an urban canyon in downtown Chicago provide insight into the formation and character of the urban heat island. In the urban center, the heat island is largely a nighttime phenomenon where thermal emission from the vertical faces of high-rise buildings and inefficient sensible heat transport lead to nocturnal urban surface temperatures warmer than would exist otherwise. The results have implications for improving the energy efficiency of heavily urbanized areas.
"The ultraviolet radiation environment of high southern latitudes: Behavior over a decadal timescale", Yixiang Liao and John E. Frederick, Photochem. Photobiol., 81, 320-324, 2005.
"Standard ultraviolet daylight for non extreme exposure conditions", Christiaens, F. J., A. Chardon, A. Fourtanier, and J. E. Frederick, Photochem. Photobiol., 81, 874-878, 2005.
"Photosynthetically active sunlight at high southern latitudes", John E. Frederick and Yixiang Liao, Photochem. Photobiol., 81,603-608, 2005.
"Ultraviolet radiation and clouds: Couplings to tropospheric air quality", Shelby Winiecki and John E. Frederick, J. Geophys. Res.-Atmospheres, 110, doi:10.1029/2005JD006199, 2005.
Principles of Atmospheric Science, Frederick, J. E., Jones and Bartlett Publishers, 211 pp, ISBN 978-0-7637-4089-4, 2008.
"A Semi-Empirical Microscale Model of the Surface Energy Balance and its Application to Two Urban Rooftops", Timothy M. Barzyk and John E. Frederick, Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 47, 819-834, 2008.
That can include course descriptions.
Geophysical Sciences 13300 - The Atmosphere. This course provides an overview of atmospheric science targeted at students majoring in an area of the physical sciences.
Physical Sciences 13500 - Chemistry and the Atmosphere. This course focuses on fundamental principles of chemistry and shows how they determine the chemical composition of the Earth's atmosphere. The material is at a level suited to non-science majors.
Public Policy 38900 - Introduction to Environmental Science and Policy. This course is taught co-taught with the Harris School for Public Policy Studies. The science portion of the course considers ways in which modern civilization is coupled to materials taken from the natural environment and the technical knowledge required to put these materials to valuable uses.
Geophysical Sciences 34800 - Radiative Transfer: Theory. This graduate level course considers absorption, scattering and emission of radiation in an atmosphere. Much of the material addresses various methods available for treating scattering of solar radiation in a planetary atmosphere.
- B. A. (magna cum laude) Hanover College, 1971, Major: Physics
- Ph.D. University of Colorado-Boulder, 1975, Department of Astro-Geophysics
- Postdoctoral Scholar, 1975-1976, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
Space Physics Research Laboratory
- Master, Physical Sciences Collegiate Division, University of Chicago, 2006-present
- Associate Dean, Physical Sciences Division and the College, University of Chicago,
- Professor of Atmospheric Science, University of Chicago, 1985-Present
- Chairman, Department of the Geophysical Sciences, University of Chicago, 1994-
- Space Scientist, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, 1977-1985
- Assistant Research Scientist, Space Physics Research Laboratory, University of
- Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching - The University of
- NASA Group Achievement Award for contributions to the Halogen Occultation
- Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award of the Environmental Protection Agency
for work by the Ozone Science Tiger Team, 2005.
- Acknowledged by Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for contributing to the
award of the Nobel Peace Prize to IPCC, 2007.