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Scott M. Collis

Department Head and Director, ATMOS

Observationalist, open source evangelist, AI user and explorer of edge computing and advanced wireless.


Scott is an atmospheric scientist and head of the Geospatial Computing, Innovations, and Sensing (GCIS) department in the Environmental Science Division at Argonne National Laboratory and a Senior Fellow at the Northwestern Argonne Institute of Science and Engineering (NAISE). Scott’s research is at the intersection of data informatics, atmospheric science, and radar meteorology. He uses and develops open-source tools to extract geophysical insight from remotely sensed data at scale, which enables a deeper understanding of atmospheric phenomena essential for the development of next-generation climate models.

Scott also is the director of the Argonne Testbed for Multiscale Observational Science, ATMOS. ATMOS is field site on the Argonne campus where new technologies, methods and approaches are developed for understanding our planet from bedrock to stratosphere. 

Scott is the inventor of the Python-ARM Radar Toolkit (Py-ART), which is an open-source community-based architecture for interacting with weather radar data. Py-ART has hundreds of users and has achieved downloads in the tens of thousands around the globe.

In 2013, Scott was nominated by his peers and later named one of Popular Science magazine’s Brilliant 10” specifically for his work in open-source software, as part of the magazine’s 13th annual awards list. He was also recently recognized as the 2019 NAISE Fellow of the Year.

Scott chaired the AMS Conference on Radar Meteorology in 2017 and is the chair for the annual Symposium on Advances in Modeling and Analysis Using the Programming Languages of Open Science. He has published a wide range of papers and has a diverse background, and is an editor for the American Meteorological Society journal AI in the Earth Sciences.  Scott acts as a Translator for a set of the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement User Facility’s Radar systems and leads the Measurement Strategy Team for the Community Research On Climate and Urban Science (CROCUS) a Department of Energy Urban Integrated Field Laboratory. 

Scott is a local expert in the Chicago media scene and a common guest on WTTW and WBEZ. A selection of media appearances can be seen here

Scott holds a PhD in physical sciences from the Australian National University, a bachelor of advanced science from the University of Sydney and a graduate diploma in meteorology from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology’s Teaching Centre.