Aug 22 2018

Welcome new AK CASC Fellows Christian Kienholz and Rick Lader

Meet Fellow Christian Kienholz

Growing up in Switzerland, Christian Kienholz acquired an interest in the cryosphere early on, spending time outdoors witnessing swift change in mountainous landscapes. Eager to experience new terrain while pursuing his main interests, Kienholz applied as an exchange student at UAF.

Two years after his exchange and a job in Switzerland’s geohazard industry, Kienholz returned to the Geophysical Institute at UAF, where he pursued a master’s degree and ultimately a PhD in Snow, Ice and Permafrost Geophysics. Following his PhD, Kienholz relocated to UAS to study glacierocean interactions. It was then that Kienholz became involved with the AK CASC Suicide Basin outburst flood project. Over the summer, he made frequent trips to the basin to conduct surveys and service instruments. For Kienholz, the field component in this project was particularly exciting given the rapid changes of the lake and glacier at the field site. He also enjoyed contributing to a project with a direct and immediate impact on the local community, where data could be used by stakeholders in a matter of hours or even in real-time.


Meet Fellow Rick Lader

With an interest in climate science, Rick Lader moved from New York to Alaska to pursue dynamical downscaling research as well as a master’s degree and his PhD in atmospheric science from the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Lader focuses on providing the most accurate information as possible to better infom near term planning decisions.  His work will emphasize dynamical downscaling across Southeast Alaska at a higher spatial resolution than what has been previously done. The southeast region has various climate regimes from temperate rainforests to high elevation ice fields. This makes it difficult to use coarse global-scale models. However, Lader's work produces climate information with regional variability, including the effects of topography and coastlines, at a resolution that’s useful to planners, land managers, and decision makers.