Sim Aberson

Research Highlights

Research Interests

Optimizing the assimilation of observations into high-resolution analysis and numerical models.

Dropwindsondes and their use in research and operations. 

Observing system experiments to test the impact of observations on numerical forecasts and to test optimal sampling strategies.

Extratropical transition of tropical cyclones.

Meso- and miso-scale features in the tropical cyclone eyewall. 

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Sim Aberson, Ph.D.

Meteorologist, Hurricane Research Division


4301 Rickenbacker Causeway
Miami, Florida 33149

“Research shows that workplaces are more productive, innovative, and better able to attract talent when they embrace equity, and inclusion, and when everyone in the diverse workforce has a sense of belonging.  Scientific innovation requires a commitment to these principles.”

Dr. Sim Aberson is a meteorologist with the Hurricane Research Division of the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML). Dr. Aberson’s primary research interest is in using data to improve forecasts of tropical cyclones globally with an emphasis on observations obtained during NOAA’s annual Hurricane Field Program. Dr. Aberson’s research has ranged from development and optimal use of dropwindsonde technology improving and verifying numerical models to investigating small-scale features in tropical cyclones that may impact future intensity. He currently serves as a co-lead of NOAA OAR’s Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee (ODIAC) and on the board of the NOAA Pride Employee Resource Group.  He serves on the American Meteorological Society History Committee, and is a member of the American Meteorological Society and Out to Innovate.

Current Work

Meteorologist, Hurricane Research Division

Download Full CV

2003, Ph.D. Atmospheric Sciences, University of Maryland, College Park, MD

1987, M.S. Meteorology, Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA

1985, B.S. Meteorology with Math Minor, Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA

  1. Aberson, S.D., J.A. Zhang, J. Zawislak, K. Sellwood, R. Rogers, and J.J. Cione. The NCAR GPS dropwindsonde and its impact on hurricane operations and research. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 2023
    Ref. 4330
  2. Zawislak, J., R.F. Rogers, S.D. Aberson, G.J. Alaka, G. Alvey, A. Aksoy, L. Bucci, J. Cione, N. Dorst, J. Dunion, M. Fischer, J. Gamache, S. Gopalakrishnan, A. Hazelton, H.M. Holbach, J. Kaplan, H. Leighton, F. Marks, S.T. Murillo, P. Reasor, K. Ryan, K. Sellwood, J.A. Sippel, and J.A. Zhang. Accomplishments of NOAA’S airborne hurricane field program and a broader future approach to forecast improvement. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 103(2):E311-E338, 2022
    Ref. 3984
  3. Aberson, S.D. Serial correlation of tropical cyclone track and intensity forecasts. NOAA Technical Memorandum, OAR-AOML-107, 6 pp., 2021
    Ref. 4022

2022 NOAA OAR EEO-Diversity Award

For diligent effort to expand diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility activities and awareness by establishing five working groups, a “What’s New” slide deck for members to share with their respective labs, programs, and staff offices, and leading the initiative to prevent sexual assault and sexual harassment during field work. 

2021 NOAA OAR Employee of the Year Award

For personal and professional excellence in advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) across AOML, OAR, and NOAA.

2021 Global Employee Resource Group Network Diversity Impact Award

In recognition of NOAA’s Diversity Professional Advancement Working Group being named as one of the top 25 employee resource groups in America.

2011 NASA Group Achievement Award

For outstanding contributions to the Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes (GRIP) field campaign as members of the GRIP Science Team during the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season.

2007 National Academy of Science Kavli Frontier Fellow, National Academy of Science

2005 National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals GLBT Scientist of the Year Award

For outstanding technical achievements that include research that has led to significant improvements in tropical cyclone forecasts, as well as for leadership and service within the GLBT (gay-lesbian-bisexual-transgender) community.

2003 National Science Foundation Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers

For research that has led to significant improvements in hurricane track forecasts and for the development of programs bringing science to young students and young students to science.

2003 NOAA OAR Employee of the Year

For leadership in promoting science and for research that has resulted in significant improvement of tropical cyclone track forecasts.

1999 NOAA/Environmental Research Laboratories Outstanding Scientific Paper Award

Burpee, R.W., J.L. Franklin, S.J. Lord, R.E. Tuleya, and S.D. Aberson, 1996: The impact of Omega dropwindsondes on operational hurricane track forecast models. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 77(5):925-933.