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Atmospheric and Space Scientist

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What is an Atmospheric and Space Scientist?

Atmospheric & Space Scientist Job Description Investigate atmospheric phenomena and interpret meteorological data, gathered by surface and air stations, satellites, and radar to prepare reports and forecasts for public and other uses. Includes weather analysts and forecasters whose functions require the detailed knowledge of meteorology.

Life As an Atmospheric & Space Scientist: What Do They Do?

  • Gather data from sources such as surface or upper air stations, satellites, weather bureaus, or radar for use in meteorological reports or forecasts.
  • Create visualizations to illustrate historical or future changes in the Earth’s climate, using paleoclimate or climate geographic information systems (GIS) databases.
  • Teach college-level courses on topics such as atmospheric and space science, meteorology, or global climate change.
  • Perform managerial duties, such as creating work schedules, creating or implementing staff training, matching staff expertise to situations, or analyzing performance of offices.
  • Conduct meteorological research into the processes or determinants of atmospheric phenomena, weather, or climate.
  • Analyze climate data sets, using techniques such as geophysical fluid dynamics, data assimilation, or numerical modeling.

Skills Needed to be an Atmospheric & Space Scientist

Atmospheric and Space Scientists state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Science: Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

  • Broadcast Meteorologist
  • Marine Meteorologist
  • Oceanographic Meteorologist
  • Operational Meteorologist
  • Radiosonde Specialist

Is There Job Demand for Atmospheric and Space Scientists?

In the United States, there were 10,400 jobs for Atmospheric and Space Scientist in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 12.5% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 1,300 new jobs for Atmospheric and Space Scientist by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 900 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Atmospheric and Space Scientists in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Atmospheric & Space Scientist are Colorado, Utah, and New Hampshire. Watch out if you plan on working in Rhode Island, Missouri, or Kansas. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for an Atmospheric & Space Scientist

The salary for Atmospheric and Space Scientists ranges between about $50,040 and $142,500 a year.

Salary Ranges for Atmospheric and Space Scientists

Atmospheric and Space Scientists who work in District of Columbia, Maryland, or New Mexico, make the highest salaries.

How much do Atmospheric and Space Scientists make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $104,130
Alaska $85,980
Arizona $93,870
California $102,020
Colorado $96,890
Connecticut $58,980
District of Columbia $138,020
Florida $95,110
Georgia $99,890
Hawaii $103,960
Idaho $97,900
Illinois $71,400
Indiana $97,520
Iowa $89,230
Kansas $85,740
Kentucky $106,450
Louisiana $84,150
Maryland $110,150
Michigan $89,840
Minnesota $102,520
Mississippi $73,270
Missouri $95,500
Montana $85,770
Nebraska $89,990
Nevada $93,770
New Hampshire $80,880
New Jersey $95,560
New Mexico $111,090
New York $89,840
North Carolina $77,830
North Dakota $74,050
Ohio $91,370
Oklahoma $81,970
Oregon $90,390
Pennsylvania $104,380
South Carolina $96,170
South Dakota $82,600
Tennessee $95,740
Texas $93,810
Utah $87,130
Virginia $108,330
Washington $92,700
Wisconsin $93,100
Wyoming $87,910

What Tools do Atmospheric and Space Scientists Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Atmospheric and Space Scientists may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Python
  • Microsoft Access
  • Word processing software
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop
  • Structured query language SQL
  • The MathWorks MATLAB
  • SAS
  • Linux
  • Facebook
  • IBM SPSS Statistics
  • UNIX
  • R
  • Practical extraction and reporting language Perl
  • Apple Final Cut Pro

How do I Become an Atmospheric & Space Scientist?

Education needed to be an Atmospheric and Space Scientist:

Atmospheric & Space Scientist Degree Level

How Long Does it Take to Become an Atmospheric & Space Scientist?

Atmospheric & Space Scientist Work Experience

Where do Atmospheric and Space Scientists Work?

Atmospheric & Space Scientist Sectors

Atmospheric and Space Scientists work in the following industries:

Atmospheric & Space Scientist Industries

Those thinking about becoming an Atmospheric and Space Scientist might also be interested in the following careers:

Career changers with experience as an Atmospheric and Space Scientist sometimes find work in one of the following fields:

References:

Image Credit: Liam Gumley via NASA, public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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