2010 Physical Sciences Review » Biographies » Michael Kraus

Michael Kraus

Michael Kraus

Dr. Michael Kraus

Chief, Aviation Branch

Global Systems Division


I oversee the efforts of the 27 people in the Aviation Branch. My job is to ensure that the Branch runs smoothly, that the budget is sufficient to support the Branch staff as well as those in other Branches supporting our projects, and that the hiring process supporting the Branch's four sections is as efficient and effective as possible. I work with the Section Chiefs to ensure that reasonable project milestones are developed, tracked, and met - or delayed for good reason. I strive to provide a sense of stability and an atmosphere of support and encouragement.


  • BS Earth Science, MIT, 1966
  • MS Meteorology, MIT, 1968
  • PhD Meteorology, McGill University, 1974

Research Interests

My interests are those of the Branch. A main goal is to deliver accurate, consistent, and relevant aviation weather products to air traffic decision makers. A key element in achieving this goal is the development of advanced aviation forecast verification techniques that yield user-specific and operationally meaningful results. These results can then be linked to automated (or, currently, human) decision support systems at critical decision points. Another interest is in computationally supporting modeling activities in the laboratory and exploring new hardware and software technologies needed to run these models more quickly and accurately on high performance computing systems.


My major accomplishments involve continued success and stability of the Branch at a time of budget growth and the additional responsibilities that follow. We hire to meet the new demands of our customers, and the organization of the Branch and its projects evolves to meet these demands. We developed a matrix management approach to get the jobs done. In aviation, we are utilizing resources from other Branches of the Division. In advanced computing, we are working together with the office of the Laboratory Director. Success in fostering harmonious and effective external working relationships is my major accomplishment.