Diao, Minghui


Assistant Professor

Phone: (408) 924-7371
Fax: (408) 924-5191

minghui.diao at sjsu.edu

One Washington Square 
San Jose, CA 95192-0104


Ph.D. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Princeton University, 2013

B.S. Environmental Sciences, Peking University, China, 2008



  • Fellowships and Awards

    2016 NCAR Advanced Study Program Faculty fellowship

    2013 - 2015 NCAR Advanced Study Program (ASP) postdoctoral fellowship

    2012 Walbridge Fund Graduate Award, Princeton University

    2012 Princeton Environment and Climate Scholars (PECS) Award

    2010 American Geophysical Union 2010 Fall Meeting, Outstanding Student Paper Award, San Francisco, USA

    2009 American Geophysical Union 2009 Spring Assembly, Outstanding Student Paper Award, Toronto, Canada

    2009 NSF Graduate Student Travel Award to Water Vapor and Climate System (WAVACS) workshop, France

    2009 - 2012 NASA Earth and Space Science (NESSF) Fellowship

    2008 - 2012 Francis Robbins Upton Graduate Fellowship at Princeton University

    2008 Honored Bachelor Thesis and Honored Bachelor at Peking University

    2007 Jun-Tsung Fellowship awarded by Nobel Laureate Tsung-Dao Lee to undergraduate students in China


Research interests

Anthropogenic influences on ice crystal properties and cirrus clouds’ radiative forcing

Aircraft-based and remote sensing observations of water vapor, ice crystals and aerosols

Numerical modeling of cloud dynamics and microphysical properties

Multi-scale dynamical influences on ice supersaturation and ice crystal formation

Aerosol indirect effects on cirrus cloud’s formation and evolution from natural and anthropogenic sources



METR 112 Global Climate Change

METR 125 Physical Meteorology

METR 215 Advanced Physical Meteorology


  • M. Diao, G.H. Bryan, H. Morrison, and J.B. Jensen, Ice nucleation parameterization and relative humidity distribution in idealized squall line simulations, Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, accepted.
  • Stephens B.B. et al., The O2/N2 Ratio and CO2 Airborne Southern Ocean (ORCAS) Study, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, in review.
  • Wu, C., X. Liu, M. Diao, K. Zhang, A. Gettelman, Z. Lu, J.E. Penner, and Z. Lin. Direct comparisons of ice cloud macro- and microphysical properties simulated by the Community Atmosphere Model version 5 with HIPPO aircraft observations, Atmos. Chem. Phys., doi:10.5194/acp-17-4731-2017, 2017.
  • D'Alessandro, J. J., M. Diao, C. Wu, X. Liu, M. Chen, H. Morrison, T. Eidhammer, J.B. Jensen, A. Bansemer, M.A. Zondlo, J.P. DiGangi. Dynamical conditions of ice supersaturation and ice nucleation in convective systems: a comparative analysis between in-situ aircraft observations and WRF simulations, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmosphere, 122, doi:10.1002/2016JD025994, 2017.
  • Tan, X., Y. Huang, M. Diao, A. Bansemer, M. A. Zondlo, J. P. DiGangi, R. Volkamer, and Y. Hu. An assessment of the radiative effects of ice supersaturation based on in situ observations, Geophysical Research Letter, 43, 11,039–11,047, doi:10.1002/2016GL071144, 2016.
  • Diao, M., J.B. Jensen, L.L. Pan, E. Jensen, C.R. Homeyer, S. Honomichl, J.F. Bresch and A. Bansemer. “Distributions of ice supersaturation and ice crystals from airborne observations in relation to upper tropospheric dynamical boundaries”, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmosphere, 120, 5101–5121. doi: 10.1002/2015JD023139, 2015.
  • Diao, M., M.A. Zondlo, A.J. Heymsfield and S.P. Beaton. “Hemispheric comparison of cirrus cloud evolution using in situ measurements in HIAPER Pole-to-Pole Observations”, Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1002/2014GL059873, 2014.
  • Diao, M., M.A. Zondlo, A.J. Heymsfield, L.M. Avallone, M.E. Paige, S.P. Beaton, T. Campos and D.C. Rogers. “Cloud-scale ice supersaturated regions spatially correlate with high water vapor heterogeneities”, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 14, 2639-2656, 2014.
  • Diao, M., M.A. Zondlo, A.J. Heymsfield, D.C. Rogers and S.P. Beaton. “Evolution of ice crystal regions on the microscale based on in situ observations”, Geophysical Research Letters, 40 (13), 3473-3478, doi: 10.1002/grl.50665, 2013.
  • Diao, M., L. Jumbam, J. Sheffield, E. Wood and M.A. Zondlo. “Validation of AIRS/AMSU-A water vapor and temperature data with in situ aircraft observations from surface to UT/LS at 87°N–67°S”, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 118 (12), 6816–6836, 2013.
  • Cziczo, D.J., K.D. Froyd, C. Hoose, E.J. Jensen, M. Diao, M.A. Zondlo, J.B. Smith, C. Twohy and D.M. Murphy. “Cirrus clouds form predominantly on mineral dust and metallic aerosol, not elemental carbon or biological particles”, Science, 340 (6138), 1320–1324, 2013.
  • Kort, E.A., S.C. Wofsy, B.C. Daube, M. Diao, J.W. Elkins, R.S. Gao, E.J. Hintsa, D.F. Hurst, R. Jimenez, F.L. Moore, J.R. Spackman and M.A. Zondlo. “Atmospheric observations of high latitude Arctic Ocean methane emissions”, Nature Geoscience, 5, 318-321, 2012.
  • Wofsy, S.C. et al. “HIAPER Pole-to-Pole Observations (HIPPO): Fine grained, global scale measurements of climatically important atmospheric gases and aerosols”, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London A, 369 (1943), 2073-2086, 2011.
  • Wunch, D. et al. “Calibration of the Total Carbon Column Observing Network using aircraft profile data”. Atmos. Meas. Tech., 3, 1351-1362, 2010.
  • Diao, M. and M. Yao. “Use of Zero-Valent Iron Nanoparticles in Inactivating Microbes”, Water Research, 43:5243-5251, 2009.


Field campaigns


NSF The O2/N2 Ratio and CO2 Airborne Southern Ocean (ORCAS) Study

Punta Arenas, Chile

2008 - 2011

NSF HIAPER Pole-to-Pole Observations (HIPPO) global campaign deployment #1-5

North America and the Central Pacific Ocean

April 2013

AQUAVIT-2 campaign, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Karlsruhe, Germany

May 2012

NSF Deep Convective Clouds & Chemistry Experiment (DC3) campaign, Kansas, US

Jan/Feb 2012

NSF Tropical Ocean Troposphere Exchange of reactive halogen species and oxygenated VOC (TORERO) campaign, Costa Rica and Chile

September 2010

NSF Pre-Depression Investigation of Cloud-systems in the Tropics (PREDICT) campaign, US Virgin Islands

April-June 2008

NSF Stratosphere-Troposphere Analyses of Regional Transport (START08) campaign, Colorado, US