Rapid Greening at Yellowstone Provides Clues to Global Climate Change

Over at NICS, Scott Gibson writes that climate researchers are using supercomputers to study the rate and extent of rapid greening of high-elevation landscapes caused by Global Warming.

The left map depicts areas in Yellowstone National Park that comprise the summer and winter range for the northern elk herd. The map on the right shows the elevation range over which the green wave occurs.

These types of analysis are beyond the reach of personal computers, and we typically had to work with large, disparate, high-resolution data sets that included vegetation layers, snow water equivalent data, and fine-scale temperature data,” said researcher Karthik Ram of the University of California, Berkeley. “RDAV and NICS made it possible to leverage high-performance computing to model these data in an efficient manner. For example, they have been very supportive in providing the resources to scale my analysis in the R programming language across a large number of cores on Nautilus. As the volume of data continues to grow, facilities like NICS and RDAV will be key to analyzing and drawing meaningful results without drowning in too much information.”

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