Fred Fehsenfeld

Fred Fehsenfeld photo

Senior Scientist

Office of the Director
Tropospheric Chemistry

Mailing address:
NOAA ESRL Chemical Sciences Division
325 Broadway, R/CSD
Boulder, CO 80305 USA

Phone: (303) 497-5819

Fred is a Senior Research Scientist with the Cooperative Institute in the Environmental Sciences of the University of Colorado. He is also a Fellow and Associate Director for Environmental Chemistry Division of CIRES. Prior to leaving Federal Service, he was a Senior Scientist at ESRL of the Department of Commerce (DOC) National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). His major area of interest is atmospheric chemistry, with emphasis on determination of the sources and processes that shape the ozone and aerosol distributions on regional to global scales and the implication for regional air quality and global climate change. He has authored or co-author of over 325 refereed publications. His awards include the Department of Commerce (DOC) Silver MetalGroup Award (2004), Presidential Rank Award (2003), DOC Gold Medal (1996), DOC Gold Medal Group Award (1965), Special Act Outstanding Paper Award for Five Years (1967), DOC Outstanding Paper Award (1964, 1970, 1982,1989, 1998, 2000, 2003), DOC/NOAA Administrator's Award (1981, 2000), and his election as a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union (1988).


B.A. in Physics in 1957 from Rice University
Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry in 1962 from the University of Texas


  • Develop new approaches and instrumentation to make atmospheric observations of hard-to-measure species that can significantly influence the chemistry of the atmosphere.
  • Plan and implement measurements of the atmospheric chemical composition from airborne platforms and at the surface in order to elucidate the processes and to identify and quantify the sources that are involved in the formation and transport of photochemical pollution and climate forcing gases and aerosols.
  • Gain an improved understanding of the role that the exchange of gases between the surface and the atmosphere plays in shaping regional climate and air quality.
  • Plan and implement atmospheric measurements, and diagnostic analyses that characterize the chemical and meteorological processes involved in the formation and evolution of the ozone and aerosol distributions in the atmosphere.
  • Undertake field studies that contribute to the evaluation and validation of air quality and climate forcing prediction and forecasting capabilities.

Current Topics

  • Participate in planning for the 2010 CalNex field study, a major study that focuses on combining air quality and climate change research. The planning is well underway. A CalNex 2010 White Paper for the overall study has been written. The CalNex 2010 Science Plan for the NOAA/CIRES component of the study has been drafted. The documents are now available for distribution to interested scientists.
  • Participate in further analysis and interpretation of the data taken during the combined 2006 air quality (TexAQS II) and climate change (GoMACCS) studies that were carried out in 2006, as well as, other CSD/ESRL studies involving the TCO group.

Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

last modified: February 04, 2011