About ARL

The Air Resources Laboratory’s (ARL) mission is to improve the ability of the Nation to protect human and ecosystem health and to support a vibrant economy through advanced atmospheric sciences and technologies. ARL’s research focus is on the surface of the earth from a few feet below the soil up to 2-3 miles in the atmosphere (aka the boundary layer), which has a direct impact on people’s health and safety, business, and the environment. ARL studies the physical and chemical processes that occur in the boundary layer, on time scales spanning a few hours to several years.

ARL studies the mixing, exchange, and transformation of energy, moisture, trace gases, and particles, and contributes inputs to meteorological models and forecast operations that are vital in improving weather, climate and air quality forecasts. Primary applications include emergency response, homeland security, air quality, weather forecasts and climate outlooks, and commerce and transportation. ARL’s vision is to effectively protect people, the environment, and commercial activities from atmospheric risks using the best available scientific understanding of boundary layer processes.

ARL News

ARL Research Presented at 2023 AMS Annual Meeting

December 29, 2022

A number of presentations at the 2023 AMS Annual Meeting will feature NOAA’s Air Resources Lab work on the boundary layer and air quality modeling products. The development and evolution of our NOAA’s air quality forecasting methods and models is discussed at several AMS presentations.

Major HYSPLIT Update Improves the Nation’s Public Safety

December 8, 2022

HYSPLIT logo. Black letters with the dot on the i as a colored plume.

On December 6, 2022, a major new version of HYSPLIT was fully implemented at NOAA. HYSPLIT is the pre-eminent model, developed and updated by NOAA’s Air Resources Laboratory, for tracking hazardous and toxic emissions from industrial, transportation, and nuclear accidents, smoke from wildfires and prescribed fires, ash from volcanic eruptions and dust from dust storms. Among its new capabilities is an expanded and enhanced capability for volcanic ash modeling.

Mauna Loa Erupts

Mauna Loa on November 28, 2022.

November 29, 2022

Mauna Loa, the largest active volcano on Earth, erupted on November 28, 2022. During this active period, NOAA’s National Weather Service and other offices continually monitor a number of conditions in real time. The current volcanic ash status for Mauna Loa, along with other volcanos in North America, is updated four times daily.