Dr Sarah Norris

Dr Sarah Norris
Institute for Climate and Atmospheric Science
School of Earth and Environment
University of Leeds
Leeds, LS2 9JT

Phone: +44 113 343 36473


Publications | Projects | CLASP

Current Research

I am primarily an observational scientist with my main research interests within the marine boundary layer turbulent fluxes and in particular the production sea spray aerosol. I have extensive experience in the field having worked on both land based and ship based campaigns all over the world from the central Arctic Ocean to the Antarctic Peninsular and the Outer Banks of North Carolina to Taiwan and Japan.

I obtained a PhD in Sea Spray Aerosol at the University of Leeds in 2006, I was working on the development of the CLASP instrument which is now used to measure high temporal resolution aerosol particle number size and concentration. Since gaining my PhD I have continued to work at the University of Leeds as a PDRA.

My main research interests lay with the marine boundary layer turbulent fluxes of aerosols and in particular sea spray. I focus on the production mechanisms of sea spray aerosols and near surface particle concentrations within the wave boundary layer and their relationship to bubble and whitecap coverage.

I am currently looking at the aerosol data collected during the WAGES and the HiWinGS proejcts. The WAGES project aims to improve our understanding of the impact of waves on the exchange of CO2 at the air-sea interface, and on the generation of sea-spray aerosol. The HiWinGS project aims to investigate the influence of forcings such as sea state on turbulent fluxes at high latitude and in high wind speed conditions.

Our Research group field blog, FrictionVelocity can be found here.

Publications - listed here



I have had a great many opportunities to work with world leading scientists on many projects over the year. A summary of all the research projects I have been a part of are described on the projects page.


I completed her PhD in September of 2006 with Mike Smith and Gerrit de Leeuw. My PhD was a joint project between the University of Leeds and TNO, Physics and Electronic Laboratory in the Netherlands. The aim of the PhD was to measure the production rate of sea salt aerosol from the ocean surface and calculate of a Sea Spray Source Function. The measurements were carried out using the new aerosol particle measuring system called CLASP (Compact Lightweight Aerosol Spectrometer), which was developed at the University of Leeds as part of the PhD. The technical paper about CLASP can be found here.


I obtained my degree in Meteorology from the University of Reading in July 2003. During my Undergraduate degree I gained valuable working experience at MRF, part of the UK Met Office, for 2 summers (6 months). Here I worked on calibrating a short wave spectrometer (SHIMS) for future use on the UK instrument aircraft, BAE 146.


Other Interests

I am a member of both the Royal Meteorological Society and the American Meteorological Society.


I was a member of the Royal Meteorological Society Student Committee from 2004 to 2006; this involved in organising the Student Conference that occurs annually.


I am the advertising officer for the Yorkshire centre of the Royal Meteorology Society. This started with our first talk in September 2009 and we now host about 3 external talks a term to members of the Society in Yorkshire and the general public.


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