Toomre received B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in aeronautics and astronautics in 1963, and then went to England as a Marshall Scholar to receive a Ph.D. from Trinity College, University of Cambridge in applied mathematics and theoretical physics in 1967. He joined the New York University mathematics faculty in 1969, and then in 1972 came to the University of Colorado as an associate professor.
- Quasi-geostrophic turbulence
- Balance equation
- Boussinesq approaches
- Rotating Benard convection
- Nonrotating Benard convection
- Penetrative convection
- Laboratory experiments with convection