These pages describe courses taught at UCLA by Prof. Alex Hall. Below are courses taught during the current academic year. Descriptions of past courses on topics such as Arctic climate change, mesoscale climate dynamics, and climate sensitivity are also available.
2009-2010 Academic Year
AOS 200B Introduction to the Dynamics of the Earth System
Lecture and discussion, four units. Fall quarter 2009.
Overview of general circulation of atmosphere and ocean; global energy
balances; coupled circulations (such as El Niņo); mesoscale,
synoptic, and tropical phenomena; boundary layers, clouds, and
convection; biogeochemical cycles; climate variability and change.
AOS 201A Geophysical Fluid Dynamics I
Lecture and discussion, four units. Winter quarter 2010.
Lecture, three hours. Fundamental equations of motion. Atmospheric and
oceanic approximations. Rotating reference frame. Density
stratification. Geostrophic adjustment and balance. Potential vorticity
conservation. Vortex dynamics. Acoustic, gravity, inertial, Rossby, and
Kelvin waves. Barotropic and baroclinic instability. Ekman boundary
layers. Oceanic wind gyres: Sverdrup balance and western boundary
currents. Letter grading.
AOS 1 Climate Change: from
Puzzles to Policy
and discussion, four units. Special laboratory option 1L, one unit. Not
offered by Prof. Alex Hall during the 2009-2010 academic year.
Overview of the fundamentals of earth's climate, including the
greenhouse effect, water and chemical cycles, outstanding features of
the atmospheric and ocean circulation, and feedbacks between different
system components. Exciting and contentious scientific puzzles of the
climate system, including the causes of the ice ages, greenhouse
warming, and El Nino/La Nina. The importance of climate science and
prediction to society, with emphasis on science's role in identifying,
quantifying, and solving environmental problems such as the ozone hole
and greenhouse warming. Letter grading.