Robert Field

Associate Research Scientist

Columbia University

Department of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics


NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

2880 Broadway

New York, NY 10025

Tel: (212) 678-5600

robert.field ‘at’ columbia ‘dot’ edu

Twitter: @robertdfield




Join us at “Fire Prediction Across Scales” in New York, October 23-25, 2017!


Experimental, near-real time fire weather data now available via the Global Fire Weather Database, including TRMM and GPM.


Research Interests

Climate modeling, biomass burning, stable water isotopes, paleoclimatology.


Full CV



PhD Atmospheric Physics, University of Toronto, 2010.

MSc Statistics, University of Alberta, 2005.

BSc Computing Science, University of Alberta, 1999.



Shawki, D., R.D. Field, M.K. Tippett, B.H. Saharjo, I. Albar, D. Atmoko, A. Voulgarakis, Long-lead prediction of the 2015 fire and haze episode in Indonesia, submitted.


van Marle, M.J.E., S. Kloster, B.I. Magi., J.R. Marlon, A. Daniau, R.D. Field, A. Arneth, M. Forrest, S. Hantson, N. Kehrwald, W. Knorr, G. Lasslop, F. Li, S. Mangeon, C. Yue, J.W. Kaiser, G.R. van der Werf, Historic global biomass burning emissions based on merging satellite observations with proxies and fire models (1750-2015), submitted.

         CMIP6 biomass burning emissions estimates data


van Marle, M.J.E., R.D. Field, G.R. van der Werf, I.A. Estrada de Wagt, R.A. Houghton, L.V. Rizzo, P. Artaxo, K. Tsigaridis, Fire and deforestation dynamics in Amazonia (1973-2012), Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 10.1002/2016GB005445, 2017.

EOS Research Spotlight


Galewsky, J., H.C. Steen-Larsen, R.D. Field, C. Risi, J. Worden, Stable isotopes in atmospheric water vapor and applications to the hydrologic cycle, Reviews of Geophysics, doi:10.1002/2015RG000512, 2016.

AGU Editor’s Highlight


Field, R.D., G.R. van der Werf, T. Fanin, E.J. Fetzer, R. Fuller, H. Jethva, R. Levy, N. J. Livesey, M. Luo, O. Torres, H.M. Worden, 2015 Indonesian fire activity and smoke pollution show persistent non-linear sensitivity to El Niño-induced drought, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi:10.1073/pnas.1524888113, 2016.

NASA Feature and PNAS news release


Geller, M.A., T. Zhou, D. Shindell, R. Ruedy, I. Aleinov, L. Nazarenko, N.L. Tausnev, M. Kelley, S. Sun, Y. Cheng, R.D. Field, G. Faluvegi, Modeling the QBO – Other Model Improvements Resulting from the Required Increased Vertical Resolution, Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, doi:10.1002/2016MS000699, 2016.


Field, R.D., M. Luo, M. Fromm, A. Voulgarakis, S. Mangeon, J. Worden, Simulating the Black Saturday 2009 smoke plume with an interactive composition-climate model: sensitivity to emissions amount, timing and injection height, Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmospheres, 121, doi:10.1002/2015JD024343, 2016.


Moore, G.W.K., R.D. Field, C. Benson, Impact of source region on the δ18O signal in snow: A case study from Mount Wrangell Alaska, Journal of Hydrometeorology, doi: 10.1175/JHM-D-14-0224.1, 2016.


Field, R.D., M. Luo, D. Kim, A. D. Del Genio, A. Voulgarakis, J. Worden, Sensitivity of simulated tropospheric CO to subgrid physics parameterization: a case study of Indonesian biomass burning emissions in 2006, Journal of Geophysical Research – Atmospheres, 120, doi:10.1002/2015JD023402, 2015.


Field, R.D., A.C. Spessa, N.A. Aziz, A. Camia, A. Cantin, R. Carr, W.J. de Groot, A.J. Dowdy, M.D. Flannigan, K. Manomaiphiboon, F. Pappenberger, V. Tanpipat, X. Wang, Development of a Global Fire Weather Database, Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, 15, 1407-1423, doi:10.5194/nhess-15-1407-2015, 2015.

Data available at the NASA GISS GFWED website and the Columbia IRI Data Library

EGU highlight article


Voulgarakis, A. and R.D. Field, Fire influences on atmospheric composition, air quality, and climate, Current Pollution Reports, 10.1007/s40726-015-0007-z, 2015.


Mangeon, S., R.D. Field, M. Fromm, C. McHugh, A. Voulgarakis, A comparison between MODIS-based burned area and fire agency reports over North America in 2007, The Anthropocene Review, 1-17, DOI: 10.1177/2053019615588790, 2015.


Spessa, A. C., R. D. Field, F. Pappenberger, A. Langner, S. Englhart, U. Weber, T. Stockdale, F. Siegert, J. W. Kaiser, and J. Moore, Seasonal forecasting of fire in Kalimantan, Indonesia, Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, 15, 429-442, doi:10.5194/nhess-15-429-2015, 2015.


Lestari, R.K., M. Watanabe, Y. Imada, H. Shiogama, R. D. Field, T. Takemura, M. Kimoto, Increasing potential of biomass burning over Sumatra, Indonesia induced by anthropogenic tropical warming, Environmental Research Letters, 9, no. 10, 104010, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/9/10/104010, 2014.


Field, R.D., D. Kim, A.N. LeGrande, J. Worden, M. Kelley, G.A. Schmidt, Evaluating climate model performance in the tropics with retrievals of water isotopic composition from Aura TES, Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1002/2014GL060572, 2014.


Porter, T.J., M.F.J. Pisaric, R.D. Field, S.V. Kokelj, T.W.D. Edwards, P. deMontigny, R. Healy, A. LeGrande, Spring-summer temperatures since AD 1780 reconstructed from stable oxygen isotope ratios in white spruce tree-rings from the Mackenzie Delta, northwestern Canada, Climate Dynamics, doi:10.1007/s00382-013-1674-3, 2014.


A. Voulgarakis, V. Naik, J.-F. Lamarque, D. T. Shindell, P. J. Young, M. J. Prather, O. Wild, R. D. Field, D. Bergman, P. Cameron-Smith, I. Cionni, W. J. Collins, S. B. Dalsøren, R. M. Doherty, V. Eyring, G. A. Folberth, L. W. Horowitz, B. Josse, I. A. McKenzie, T. Nagashima, D. A. Plummer, M. Righi, S. T. Rumbold, D. S. Stevenson, S. A. Strode, K. Sudo, S. Szopa, and G. Zeng, Simulations of present-day and future OH and methane lifetime in the ACCMIP project, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 13, doi:10.5194/acp-13-2563-2013, 2563-2587, 2013.


Field, R.D., C. Risi, G.A. Schmidt, J. Worden, A. Voulgarakis, A.N. LeGrande, A.H. Sobel, R.J. Healy, A Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer HDO/H2O retrieval simulator for climate models, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 12, doi:10.5194/acp-12-10485-2012, 10485-10504, 2012. [PDF]


Field, R.D., D.B.A. Jones and D.P. Brown, The effects of post-condensation exchange on the isotopic composition of water in the atmosphere, Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres, 115, D24305, doi:10.1029/2010JD014334, 2010. [PDF]


Field, R.D., Observed and modeled controls on precipitation δ18O over Europe: from local temperature to the Northern Annular Mode, Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres, 115, D12101, doi:10.1029/2009JD013370, 2010. [PDF]


Field, R.D., G.W.K. Moore, G. Holdsworth, and G. A. Schmidt. A GCM-based analysis of circulation controls on δ18O in the southwest Yukon, Canada: implications for climate reconstructions in the region, Geophysical Research Letters, 37 (5), doi:10.1029/2009GL041408, 2010. [PDF]


Hanesiak, J., R. Stewart, P. Taylor, K. Moore, D. Barber, G. McBean, W. Strapp, M. Wolde, R. Goodson, E. Hudson, D. Hudak, J. Scott, G. Liu, J. Gilligan, S. Biswas, D. Desjardins, R. Dyck, S. Fargey, R. Field, G. Gascon, M. Gordon, H. Greene, C. Hay, W. Henson, K. Hochheim, A. Laplante, R. Martin, M. Melzer, and S. Zhang, Storm Studies in the Arctic (STAR), Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 91 (1), 47-68, 2010. [PDF]


Field, R.D., G.R. van der Werf, and S.S.P. Shen, Human amplification of drought-induced biomass burning in Indonesia since 1960, Nature Geoscience, 2 (3), 185-188, doi:10.1038/ngeo443, 2009. [PDF]

Coverage in The New York Times and New Scientist

Nature Geoscience Backstory and press release

News releases from the University of Toronto, VU Amsterdam, NWO



Field, R. D., and S. S. P. Shen. Predictability of carbon emissions from biomass burning in Indonesia from 1997 to 2006, Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, 113, G04024, doi:10.1029/2008JG000694, 2008. [PDF]


de Groot, W.J., R.D. Field, M.A. Brady, O. Roswintiarti, and M. Mohamad. Development of the Indonesian and Malaysian Fire Danger Rating Systems. Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, 12, 165-180, 2007. [PDF]


Dymond, C.C., R.D. Field, O. Roswintiarti, and Guswanto. Calibrating components of a fire management system using satellite fire detection. Environmental Management, 35, 426-440, 2005. [PDF]


Field, R.D., Y. Wang, O. Roswintiarti, and Guswanto. A drought-based predictor of recent haze events in western Indonesia. Atmospheric Environment, 38, 1869-1878, 2004. [PDF]

Excel code to Calculate Canadian Fire Weather Index values

Petawawa test data


Wang, Y., R.D. Field, and O. Roswintiarti. Trends in atmospheric haze induced by peat fires in Sumatra Island, Indonesia and El Nino phenomenon from 1973 to 2003. Geophysical Research Letters, 31, L04103, 2004. [PDF]