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Press Room

14 April 2008

NSIDC Scientist Named CIRES Fellow

NSIDC researcher Tingjun Zhang has been elected to the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) Council of Fellows. CIRES is NSIDC's parent institution at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Zhang is a senior research scientist at NSIDC and adjunct director of China’s Institute of Plateau Meteorology. He was also a lead author on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2007 report on climate change.

A member of NSIDC since 1996, Zhang conducts research on permafrost and seasonally frozen ground. He is an expert in using passive microwave remote sensing techniques to understand freeze-thaw cycles of soils around the world. Zhang also conducts studies on permafrost degradation and climate change over the Siberian Arctic through in situ data analysis and numerical modeling.

This summer, Zhang will travel to the Tibetan Plateau in western China to survey changes in permafrost and frozen ground. He and his colleagues in China maintain a monitoring network along the newly constructed Qinghai-Xizang Railway and seek to understand how railway operations, in addition to other environmental changes, impact the permafrost environment. In early July, Zhang will also travel to Alaska to study microbial activities in permafrost as part of an International Polar Year project.

Zhang will be the fourth representative from NSIDC to serve on the current council and will provide a unique perspective to the group, which is primarily made up of university faculty or National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) employees.

To read about Zhang’s research and accomplishments, see For more information on Zhang’s election to the council, please contact the NSIDC Press Room at or +1 303 492.1497.