This animation shows Community Earth System Model (CESM) output depicting
hourly time steps of water vapor (TMQ) across the globe for an entire year. The CESM is
a fully coupled, global climate model that provides state-of-the-art computer simulations of the
Earth's past, present, and future climate states. This ultra-high resolution global model shows
developing weather patterns in rich detail, and helps researchers understand the effect of smaller,
more localized weather on the dynamics of climate at the planetary scale.
The current generation of coupled general circulation models (CGCMs) is
designed to be able to perform century and multi-century simulations.
With existing computing power availability, this has restricted models
to have grid spacings of around 1Â° (~100km). These models adequately resolve
large scale climate characteristics but do not
capture smaller scale features such as tropical cyclones, which have
important local impacts and may feedback to the large scale climate.
In this ultra-high resolution experiment, the Community Earth System Model was
used for a 60 year simulation under "present-day (year 2000)" greenhouse gas
conditions with much finer grid spacings of 10km to 25km. This is made possible in part thanks to the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center.
The research was enabled by the National Center for Atmospheric Research's
(NCAR) Computational and Information Systems Laboratory (CISL) compute and
storage resources, including Yellowstone, the petascale computer in the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center (NWSC), which opened in October 2012 in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
This project was funded by Department of Energy (DOE) office of Biological and Environmental Research. Computing time was supported by DOE and National Science Foundation through its support of NCAR and the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center.
Climate Science: Justin Small, Julio Bacmeister, David Bailey, Frank Bryan, Julie Caron, David Lawrence, Bob Tomas, Joe Tribbia (All NCAR) Computation: Allison Baker, John Dennis, Jim Edwards, Andy Mai, Mariana Vertenstein (All NCAR)