In this video from the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Ontario, Dr. Tim Palmer from the University of Oxford presents: Climate Change, Chaos, and Inexact Computing. “How well can we predict the climate future? This question is at the heart of Tim Palmer’s research into the links between chaos theory and the science of climate change. Palmer will discuss climate modeling, the emerging concept of inexact supercomputing, and chaos theory.”
Data accumulation is just one of the challenges facing today weather and climatology researchers and scientists. To understand and predict Earth’s weather and climate, they rely on increasingly complex computer models and simulations based on a constantly growing body of data from around the globe. “It turns out that in today’s HPC technology, the moving of data in and out of the processing units is more demanding in time than the computations performed. To be effective, systems working with weather forecasting and climate modeling require high memory bandwidth and fast interconnect across the system, as well as a robust parallel file system.”
Because of the complexity involved, the length of the simulation period, and the amounts of data generated, weather prediction and climate modeling on a global basis requires some of the most powerful computers in the world. The models incorporate topography, winds, temperatures, radiation, gas emission, cloud forming, land and sea ice, vegetation, and more. However, although weather prediction and climate modeling make use of a common numerical methods, the items they compute differ.
In this video from the Barcelona Supercomputer Center, Big Data is presented as a key challenge for researchers studying global climate change. “Changes in the composition of the atmosphere can affect the habitability of the planet by modifying the air quality and altering long-term climate. Research in this area is devoted to the development, implementation and refinement of global and regional state-of-the-art models for short-term air quality forecasting and long-term climate predictions.”
“Sea level rise is one of the most visible signatures of our changing climate, and rising seas have profound impacts on our nation, our economy and all of humanity,” said Michael Freilich, director of NASA’s Earth Science Division. “By combining space-borne direct measurements of sea level with a host of other measurements from satellites and sensors in the oceans themselves, NASA scientists are not only tracking changes in ocean heights but are also determining the reasons for those changes.”
“Climate change – or as Doug Sisterson, research meteorologist at Argonne National Laboratory, prefers to call it, climate disruption – is probably the greatest challenge we face in modern society, yet many of us don’t fully understand the causes or the consequences. Washington Governor Jay Inslee famously stated: “We’re the first generation to feel the impact of climate change and the last generation that can do something about it.”
“HPC is transforming our everyday lives, as well as our not-so-ordinary ones. From nanomaterials to jet aircrafts, from medical treatments to disaster preparedness, and even the way we wash our clothes; the HPC community has transformed the world in multifaceted ways.”
“This collaborative research between the University of Illinois, the National Center for Atmospheric Research, and the University of Maryland is aimed at using the Blue Waters petascale resources to address key uncertainties associated with the numerical modeling of the Earth’s climate system and the ability to accurately analyze past and projected future changes in climate.”
NASA Goddard has posted some remarkable simulations that offer a stunning new look at how carbon dioxide in the atmosphere travels around the globe.
Researchers are HPC resources at the Ohio Supercomputer Center to better understand current weather patterns and potential climate change in the future.