Robert H. Holzworth

Professor Emeritus of Earth & Space Science

University of Washington
Earth and Space Sciences

Room 263 Johnson Hall

BOX 351310

Seattle, WA 98195-1310
(206) 685-7410 (office)
(206) 685-3815 (fax)  

Pictures from the MASS rocket campaign, Andenes, Norway, July/August 2007

main WWLLN webpage

Ph.D., Physics, University of California, Berkeley, 1977.
Asst. Res. Physicist, Space Science Lab, UC Berkeley, 1977 - 8.
Member of the Technical Staff, Space Science Lab, The Aerospace Corp., Los Angeles, 1978-82
UW Faculty since 1982, Emeritus since 2020

Experimental space plasma physics, atmospheric and magnetospheric electrodynamics, middle atmosphere electrodynamics, thunderstorm and lightning electrodynamics.

My research involves the experimental investigation of electrical parameters in the Earth's environment, in particular, the study of the electromagnetic energy flow that couples separated environments such as the atmosphere, the ionosphere, and the magnetosphere. Active projects include ground-based, balloon, rocket and satellite experiments to study atmospheric and space electrodynamics especially as relates to lightning (World Wide Lightning Location network) (see for more information.

Not taking any more PhD students, still working part time on several funded projects, plus managing WWLLN.

Email Bob at .

Recipes here


134. **),*) Virts, Katrina S., John M. Wallace, Michael L. Hutchins, and Robert H. Holzworth,Diurnal and seasonal lightning variability over the Gulf Stream and the Gulf of Mexico, Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences doi:, 2015
135. *) Permyakov, M. S., E. Yu. Potapova,  , B. M. Shevtsov , N. V. Cherneva , and R.H. Holzworth, Thunderstorm Activity and the Structure of Tropical Cyclones, ISSN 10248560, Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics, 2015, Vol. 28, No. 6, pp. 485–490. © Pleiades Publishing, Ltd., 2015 (Original Russian Text © M.S. Permyakov, E.Yu. Potapova, B.M. Shevtsov, N.V. Cherneva, R.H. Holzworth, @@, published in Optika Atmosfery i Okeana.)
136. Hardman, Rachael, Mark A. Clilverd, Craig J. Rodger, James B. Brundell, Roger Duthie, Robert H. Holzworth, Ian R. Mann, David K. Milling, Eva Macusova, A case study of electron precipitation fluxes due to plasmaspheric hiss, J. Geophysical, Res., V. 128(8), pp.6736-48, Aug 2015 
137. *) Shevtsov, B. M., P. P. Firstov, N. V. Cherneva, R. H. Holzworth, and R. R. Akbashev, Lightning and electrical activity during the Shiveluch volcano eruption on 16 November 2014, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss., 3, 6745–6755, 2015 (first view Nov 2014)
  1. *) Chronis, T., M. Briggs, G. Priftis, V. Connaughton, J. Brundell, R. Holzworth, S. Heckman, S. McBreen, G. Fitzpatrick, and M. Stanbro, 2015: Characteristics of Thunderstorms that produce Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 639-653, doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-14-00239.1, Apr. 2016.
139.  **),*)Zheng, H., R. H. Holzworth, J. B. Brundell, A. R. Jacobson, J. R. Wygant, G. B. Hospodarsky, F. S. Mozer, and J. Bonnell, A statistical study of whistler waves observed by Van Allen Probes (RBSP) and lightning detected by WWLLN, J. Geophys. Res. Space Physics, 121, doi:10.1002/2015JA022010. (2016), 
140. **),*) Dixon, Ken,  Clifford F. Mass, Gregory J. Hakim, and Robert H. Holzworth, The Impact of Lightning Data Assimilation on Deterministic and Ensemble Forecasts of Convective Events, JTECH, JTECH, V. 33, doi: 10.1175/JTECH-D-15-0188.1,  June 2016
141. *) Pickering, K. E., E. Bucsela, D. Allen, A. Ring, R. Holzworth, and N. Krotkov (2016), Estimates of lightning NOx production based on OMI NO2 observations over the Gulf of Mexico, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 121, doi:10.1002/2015JD024179., July 2016.
142. *) Jacobson, A. R., R. H. Holzworth, R. Pfaff, and R. Heelis (2016), Automated identification of discrete, lightning generated, multiple-dispersed whistler waves in C/NOFS-VEFI very low frequency observations, Radio Sci., 51, doi:10.1002/2016RS005989, August 2016
143. *) Smith, D. M., P. Buzbee, N. A. Kelley, A. Infanger, R. H. Holzworth, and J. R. Dwyer (2016), The rarity of terrestrial gamma-ray flashes: 2. RHESSI stacking analysis, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 121, 11,382–11,404, doi:10.1002/2016JD025395.

144.        *) Solorzano, N. N.; Thomas, J. N.; Hutchins, M. L. and R. H. Holzworth, WWLLN lightning and satellite microwave radiometrics at 37 to 183 GHz: Thunderstorms in the broad tropics, J.Geophys. Res. Atmos., 121,12,298-318, DOI: 10.1002/2016JD025374, 2016

145.        *) Thornton, J. A., K. S. Virts, R. H. Holzworth, and T. P. Mitchell (2017), Lightning enhancement over major oceanic shipping lanes, Geophys. Res. Lett, 44, 9102–9111, doi:10.1002/2017GL074982

146.        *) Firstov, P.P., R. Akbashev, R. H. Holzworth, B.M. Shevtsov,  Atmospheric Electric Effects during the Explosion of Shiveluch Volcano on November 16, 2014, Izvestiya Atmospheric and Oceanic Physics 53(53 1):24-31 · January 201DOI: 10.1134/S0001433817010066

*) Provided Primary Data set for research, **) supported for this research

147. Bowers  G. S., D. M. Smith  N. A. Kelley  G. F. Martinez‐McKinney  S. A. Cummer J. R. Dwyer  S. Heckman  R. H. Holzworth  F. Marks  P. Reasor  J. Gamache  J. Dunion T. Richards  H. K. Rassoul (2018). A terrestrial gamma-ray flash inside the eyewall of Hurricane Patricia. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres,, Accepted article online 4 MAY 2018

148. Jacobson, A. R., Holzworth, R. H., Pfaff, R., & Heelis, R. (2018). Coordinated satellite observations of the very low frequency transmission through the ionospheric D layer at low latitudes, using broadband radio emissions from lightning. Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, 123, 2926–2952. 10.1002/2017JA024942

149.  Roberts,  O. J., G. Fitzpatrick  M. Stanbro  S. McBreen  M. S. Briggs  R. H. Holzworth  J. E. Grove A. Chekhtman  E. S. Cramer  B. G. Mailyan, The First Fermi-GBM Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flash Catalog, Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, 123, 2018, 10.1029/2017JA0248

  1. Hargie, K.A., A.R. Van Eaton, L.G. Mastin, R. H.Holzworth, J.W.Ewert, M.Pavolonis, Globally detected volcanic lightning and umbrella dynamics during the 2014 eruption of Kelud, Indonesia, Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, Volume 382, 15 September 2019, Pages 81-91.
  2. Romps, D. M., A. B. Charn, R. H. Holzworth, W. E. Lawrence, J. Molinari and D. Vollaro (2018) CAPE times P Explains Lightning Over Land but Not the Land-ocean Contrast, Geophys. Res. Lett., 45,
  3. Aich, V., R. Holzworth, S. J. Goodman, Y. Kuleshov, C. Price, and E. Williams (2018), Lightning: A new essential climate variable, Eos, 99, Published on 07 September 2018.
  4. Yagova, N. V., A. K. Sinha, V. A. Pilipenko, E. N. Fedorov, R. H. Holzworth and G. Vichare, ULF electromagnetic noise from regional lightning activity: Model and observations, J. of Atmos and Solar-Terrestrial Physics, 182, January 2019, pp.223-8
  5. PERMYAKOV, MIKHAIL, TATIANA KLESHCHEVA, AND EKATERINA POTALOVA, ROBERT H. HOLZWORTH, Characteristics of Typhoon Eyewalls According to World Wide Lightning Location Network Data, Monthly Weather Review (AMS) V.147(11), , Nov 2019
  6. Abram R. Jacobson, Robert H. Holzworth, Robert Pfaff, Roderick Heelis, Low-latitude whistler-wave spectra and polarization from VEFI and CINDI payloads on C/NOFS satellite, JGR Space Physics, Volume125, Issue1, January 2020, e2019JA027074 , Nov 2019.
  7. Bucsela, Eric, Kenneth E. Pickering, Dale Allen, Robert Holzworth, Nickolay Krotkov, Midlatitude lighting NOx production efficiency inferred from OMI and WWLLN data, (2019).Midlatitude lightning NOx production efficiency inferred from OMI and WWLLN data. Journal of Geo.Res: Atmospheres, 124,13,475–13,497.
  8. Larkey, R. K., Sample, J. G., Smith, D. M., Briggs, M. S.,Lapierre, J. L., & Holzworth, R. H. (2019). Evidence for extended charging periods prior to terrestrial gamma ray flashes. Geophysical Research Letters, 46,
  9. Dale J. Allen1, Kenneth E. Pickering1, Eric Bucsela2, Nickolay Krotkov3, and Robert Holzworth4 Lightning NOx Production in the Tropics as Determined Using OMI NO2 Retrievals and WWLLN Stroke Data, JGR 2019
  10.  Holzworth, R.H., M. P. McCarthy, J. B. Brundell, A. R. Jacobson, C. J.. Rodger, Global distribution of superbolts, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 124., 2019
  11.  A Fermi Gamma‐Ray Burst Monitor Event Observed as a Terrestrial Gamma‐Ray Flash and Terrestrial Electron Beam, M. Stanbro  M. S. Briggs  O. J. Roberts  E. Cramer  J. R. Dwyer  R.H. Holzworth  B. G. Mailyan  S. L. Xiong, J. Geophys Res Space Physics, 123(12), 10580-10591, 2019
  12. Detection of VLF attenuation in the Earth‐ionosphere waveguide caused by X‐class solar flares using a global lightning location network, Anderson, T. S., McCarthy, M. P., & Holzworth, R. H. (2020), Space Weather, 18 (3), e2019SW002408.
  13. Smith, D. M., Kelley, N. A., Buzbee, P., Infanger, A., Splitt, M., Holzworth, R. H., & Dwyer, J. R. (2020). Special classes of terrestrial gamma ray flashes from RHESSI. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, Volume125, Issue20, 27 October 2020, e2020JD033043125, e2020JD033043.
  14. Van Eaton, Alexa R., David J. Schneider, Cassandra M. Smith, Matthew M. Haney, John J. Lyons, Ryan Said, David Fee, Robert H. Holzworth & Larry G. Mastin,special classes Did ice-charging generate volcanic lightning during the 2016–2017 eruption of Bogoslof volcano, Alaska?, Bull. Of Volcanology (2020) 82:24,
  15. Firstov, Pavel P.; Malkin, Evgeniy I.; Akbashev, Rinat R.; Druzhin, Gennadiy I.; Cherneva, Nina V.; Holzworth, Robert H.; Uvarov, Vladimir N.; Stasiy, Ivan E. 2020. "Registration of Atmospheric-Electric Effects from Volcanic Clouds on the Kamchatka Peninsula (Russia)" Atmosphere 11, no. 6: 634.
  16. Radio Frequency Emissions Associated with Multi-Pulsed Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes, Mailyan Bagrat, Mark Stanbro, M.S. Briggs, S. Cummer, J. R. Dwyer, O. J. Roberts and R. Holzworth, JGR Space Physics, 2020JA027928RRR, 2021


Lightning in the Arctic, GRL, 2021


CAPE Threshold for lightning over the tropical ocean, Wei-Yi Cheng, Daehyun Kim, Robert Holzworth, some AGU journal – published 2021


Using the World Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN) to study Very Low Frequency transmission in the Earth-Ionosphere Waveguide: 2. Model test by patterns …AR Jacobson, RH Holzworth, JB Brundell - Radio Science, 2022


Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, The Relationship Between TGF ,

Production in Thunderstorms and Lightning Flash Rates and Amplitudes, R. K. Larkey,J. G. Sample,D. M. Smith,J. L. Lapierre,E. DiGangi,R. H. Holzworth, 24 June 2021


Pfaff, R., Uribe, P., Fourre, R. …(R. H. Holzworth)…et al. The Vector Electric Field Investigation (VEFI) on the C/NOFS Satellite. Space Sci Rev 217, 85 (2021).



(updated jan 2022)

See for full list


Bob's Home Page Jan 2022/