Dr Andrew Klekociuk: BSc(Hons) PhD

Research interests

I work as a Principal Research Scientist and lead the Atmosphere Section of the Antarctic Climate Program (ACP) within the AAD’s Science Branch. I currently specialise in two research areas:

  • understanding the role of stratospheric ozone depletion in climate processes as a contribution to national obligations under the Montreal Protocol
  • understanding the processes involved in radiation biases associated with clouds and aerosols over the Southern Ocean as a contribution to the Australian Antarctic Program Partnership (AAPP).

I also support and undertake a range of other research in the Australian Antarctic Program (AAP).

I grew up in Tasmania, and studied at the University of Tasmania, where I gained a PhD in physics in 1991. My research thesis in radioastronomy was entitled ‘Timing Observations of the Vela Pulsar PSR0833-45'. In 1987, prior to completing my PhD, I joined the Australian Antarctic Division as a research physicist, and have remained in full time employment with the Division ever since. In 1988 I wintered at Macquarie Island, where I maintained the Upper Atmospheric Physics observatory and collected data for a research project on pulsating aurorae. Following this I was involved with three field campaigns to study pulsating aurorae and auroral energetics, which involved stints at Mawson (1990–91), Macquarie Island (1991–92) and Kotezbue, Alaska (1992).

From 1994 to 2014 I led a collaboration between the Antarctic Division and the University of Adelaide that developed and established a sophisticated LIDAR (light detection and ranging) facility at Davis station in Antarctica for the study of atmospheric processes and climate. From 2001 to 2012, the Davis LIDAR measured atmospheric density, temperature and aerosol characteristics from 5 to 95 km altitude. The instrument is currently being re-tasked for new studies of cloud and aerosol processes. My research with this instrument centred on interpretation of the measurements in the context of describing basic atmospheric processes and their relationship with global climate. This work also involved five summer expeditions to Davis.

During my work with the Davis LIDAR, I helped to establish a long-term program of in-situ ozone measurements at Davis using ozonesondes. These measurements are an important part of Australia’s research contribution to protecting the ozone layer. Out of this work I helped to develop the chemistry-climate modelling capability of the Australian Community Climate and Earth System Simulator (ACCESS), and this has led to Australia’s participation in the Chemistry-Climate Model Initiative (CCMI), which is an inter-comparison of leading-edge climate models. The lidar research has led to development of instrumentation and research capabilities in helping to resolve climate model biases associated with Southern ocean clouds and aerosols.

Current projects

Australian Antarctic Science Program (AAS) projects

  • #4293: Australia-China Ozone Research Nexus (ACORN), Chief Investigator
  • #4637: Davis Atmospheric Observatory

External projects

Australian Antarctic Program Partnership (AAPP) Theme 1: Antarctica's influence on climate and sea level

Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage project: Advancing Antarctic science with a new high altitude platform capability

NCIMAS: Atmosphere-Ocean Coupled Chemistry Climate Modelling of Ozone and Aerosols

Collaborations & representations
Key outcome areas

My work supports the national capability and the international community in understanding and assessing past, present and future climate in two specific areas:

  • Ozone depletion is a significant agent in climate change in the Southern Hemisphere. My focus is on tracking the progress of recovery of Antarctic ozone and developing deeper understanding of the interactions between ozone and climate and how these interactions will play out into the future. My work assists the Australian Government in meeting its ozone research obligations under the Montreal Protocol, and is used in the WMO/UNEP ozone assessments which then feeds into the assessment reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
  • Clouds remain one of the largest sources of uncertainty in future climate projections. My focus is on resolving the radiation and cloud biases present in climate models over the Southern Ocean in order to provide greater accuracy in climate projections for this region. The outcomes of this work are undertaken in support the Grand Challenge on Clouds, Circulation and Climate Sensitivity of the World Climate Research Programme, and are used by the IPCC to inform their assessment reports.

Meteoritic dust from the atmospheric disintegration of a large meteoroid, AR Klekociuk, PG Brown, DW Pack, DO ReVelle, WN Edwards, RE Spalding, E. Nature 436 (7054), 1132-1135, 2005.

First Southern Hemisphere common-volume measurements of PMC and PMSE, AR Klekociuk, RJ Morris, JL Innis, Geophysical Research Letters 35 (24), L24804, 2008.

The effect of orographic gravity waves on Antarctic polar stratospheric cloud occurrence and composition, SP Alexander, AR Klekociuk, MC Pitts, AJ McDonald, A Arevalo‐Torres, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 116 (D6), 2011.

Rayleigh lidar observations of gravity wave activity in the winter upper stratosphere and lower mesosphere above Davis, Antarctica (69° S, 78° E), SP Alexander, AR Klekociuk, DJ Murphy, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres (1984–2012) 116 (D13), 2011.

Structure and long-term change in the zonal asymmetry in Antarctic total ozone during spring, AV Grytsai, OM Evtushevsky, OV Agapitov, AR Klekociuk, GP Milinevsky, Annales Geophysicae 25 (2), 361-374, 2005.

Antarctic environment, AR Klekociuk and B Wienecke, in: Australia State of the Environment 2016: Department of the Environment and Energy, 2017.

First year of Rayleigh Lidar measurements of middle atmosphere temperatures above Davis, Antarctica, AR Klekociuk, MM Lambert, RA Vincent and AJ Dowdy, Advances in Space Research 32(5). 771-776, 2003.

Analysis of 24 years of mesopause region OH rotational temperature observations at Davis, Antarctica. Part 2: Evidence of a quasi-quadrennial oscillation (QQO) in the polar mesosphere, WJR French, AR Klekociuk and F Mulligan, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 20, 8691–8708, 2020.

Inter-hemispheric asymmetry in polar mesosphere summer echoes and temperature at 69 latitude, RJ Morris, AR Klekociuk, R Latteck, W Singer, DA Holdsworth, DJ Murphy, Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 71 (3), 464-469, 2009.

Future Antarctic ozone recovery rates in September–December predicted by CCMVal-2 model simulations, JM Siddaway, SV Petelina, D Karoly, AR Klekociuk, RJ Dargaville, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions 12 (8), 18959-18991, 2013.

See more of Dr Klekociuk's publications on Google Scholar.