Ruben Behnke

Ruben Behnke

  • Contact Information
  • My Story
  • Background
  • Interests
  • Grants

Contact Information

TitleNebraska Mesonet Manager / Applied Meteorologist
Faculty RankAssistant Geoscientist
Address153b North Hardin Hall
3310 Holdrege Street
Lincoln NE

East Campus
  • office: 402-472-9180
  • fax: 402-472-4915


Contact Preference

Office phone or email

My Story

Hi, I’m Ruben Behnke, and I’m the Nebraska Mesonet Manager. Previous to this position, I worked for 5 and half years with the South Dakota Mesonet.

I have always been fascinated by the weather, and specifically, enjoy taking weather observations. It may come as a surprise, but basic weather observations still form the basis of current atmospheric science, even in lieu of the most sophisticated weather models. Taking these observations is often as much an art as it is science, and there are many different aspects to weather observation, ranging from site location to web development and the electronics behind the instrumentation. So, my job duties vary significantly from day to day, which I enjoy greatly. In fact, a large part of my job is talking with people who use or want to use our data, which is one of my favorite parts of my job.

The observations we take are used a in wide variety of applications, including National Weather Service forecasting and verification. Farmers often use our data to gauge when planting, spraying, or harvesting conditions are right, based on parameters such as accumulated Growing Degree Days or soil moisture. Emergency and/or land and water managers use our data to predict flooding potential, heat and cold risk/values, and much more. I am always open to talking with anyone who wants to know more!



DegreeMajorInstitutionYear Awarded
Doctorate of PhilosophyForestry and Conservation ScienceUniversity of Montana2017
Master of ScienceAtmospheric and Oceanic ScienceUniversity of Wisconsin-Madison2011
Bachelor of ScienceEnvironmental Science and Field Biology2007






SNR Program Areas

  • Applied Climate and Spatial Science

Areas of Interest/Expertise

  • Weather
  • Climate
  • Evapotranspiration
  • Agriculture
  • Soil Science


Currently this page only displays grants that were awarded on 1/1/ 2009 to the present. If a grant was awarded prior to 1/1/ 2009 and is still active, it will not be displayed on this page.

Grant TitleUMRB: Plains Snow and Soil Moisture Monitoring Network
Starting Date01/01/2024


Ending Date09/14/2024
Funding Level$180,928.00
Funding AgencyNational Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration


Grant TitleUpper Missouri Basin Soil Moisture and Snowpack Monitoring
Starting Date01/01/2024


Ending Date09/30/2025
Funding Level$760,505.00
Funding AgencyU.S. Army Corp of Engineers