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DACA-13: a meeting of ice and air

DACA_13 conference in Davos

Picture window – the view at the DACA-13 conference in Davos, Switzerland.

By Liz Kalaugher

Davos has close links to the cryosphere. It’s home to the SLF Centre for Snow and Avalanche Research and sitting at 1560 m is the highest town in the Swiss Alps. With that in mind, the Davos Atmosphere and Cryosphere Assembly (DACA-13) has brought together 900 researchers in a location surrounded by mountains.

The opening ceremony had a distinctly local flavour, with scientists being treated to a selection of traditional Swiss music as well as more international tunes such as “Dream a little dream”, which Hans Volkert of the co-hosting International Association of Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences (IAMAS) suggested was what every researcher did when submitting a paper. Along with presentations about the SLF Centre and the Physikalisch-Meteorologisches Observatorium Davos/World Radiation Centre, delegates saw James Screen of the University of Exeter, UK, receive the inaugural IAMAS Early-Career Scientist Medal for his contributions to meteorology and atmospheric physics in the polar regions.

Andrew Mackintosh of the co-host International Association of Cryospheric Sciences (IACS) explained that  later in the week, delegates could suggest topics for IACS working groups, which focus on short-term projects that can see results in around four years. The last word goes to Athena Coustenis of IAMAS, who, quoting Mark Twain, said that climate is what you expect, while weather is what you get.

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