Riley Culberg

Riley Culberg

Assistant Professor


Riley Culberg holds a B.Sc. in computer science and geospatial information science from the United States Military Academy and an M.Sc. and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University. He was previously a Hess Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Geosciences at Princeton University and  joined the Cornell Earth and Atmospheric Sciences department as an Assistant Professor in July 2023.

Research Interests

Dr. Culberg’s research focuses on understanding the near-surface hydrology and internal structure of ice sheets and icy planetary bodies using ice-penetrating radar. He is particularly interested in understanding the role that shallow water systems play in modulating sea-level contributions from the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. His work takes a quantitative hydrogeophysics approach that combines in situ observations, electromagnetic models, and geophysical inverse methods to characterize the physical properties and subsurface dynamics of englacial water systems from radar observations. He also integrates these geophysical observations with field measurements, surface remote sensing methods, and numerical models to better understand the links between near-surface processes, climate, and ice sheet hydrology and mass balance. Additionally, he is interested in using these kinds of terrestrial observations as analogs to study near-surface cryo-hydrologic processes on icy satellites such as Europa.

Selected Publications

  • Culberg, R., Schroeder, D. M., & Steinbrügge, G. (2022). Double ridge formation over shallow water sills on Jupiter’s moon Europa. Nature Communications, 13, 1–10.
  • Culberg, R., Schroeder, D. M., & Chu, W. (2021). Extreme melt season ice layers reduce firn permeability across Greenland. Nature Communications, 12, 1–9.
  • Chu, W., Hilger, A. M., Culberg, R., Schroeder, D. M., Jordan, T. M., Seroussi, H., … Vaughan, D. G. (2021). Multisystem Synthesis of Radar Sounding Observations of the Amundsen Sea Sector From the 2004–2005 Field Season. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, 126(10), 1–17.
  • Culberg, R., & Schroeder, D. M. (2020). Firn clutter constraints on the design and performance of orbital radar ice sounders. IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 58(9), 6344–6361.


  • Ph.D. (Electrical Engineering), Stanford University, 2022
  • M.Sc. (Electrical Engineering), Stanford University, 2019
  • B.Sc. (Computer Science & GIS), United States Military Academy, 2012