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Titan Simulations Show Importance of Close Two-Way Coupling Between Human and Earth Systems


Aspects of the new simulation.

A new integrated climate model developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory and other institutions is designed to reduce uncertainties in future climate predictions as it bridges Earth systems with energy and economic models and large-scale human impact data.

Credit: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) researchers have used supercomputers including the 27-petaflop Titan built by Cray that features a hybrid architecture, to integrate massive codes that combine physical and biological processes in the Earth system with feedback from human activity.

"The model we developed and applied couples biospheric feedbacks from oceans, atmosphere, and land with human activities, such as fossil fuel emissions, agriculture, and land use, which eliminates important sources of uncertainty from projected climate outcomes," says ORNL researcher Peter Thornton.

As part of the Advanced Scientific Computing Research Leadership Computing Challenge program, Thornton's team was awarded 85 million compute hours to improve the U.S. Department of Energy's Accelerated Climate Modeling for Energy (ACME) effort. Increased use of Titan's graphics-processing units (GPUs) is helping the project move forward.

The Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility is working with Thornton's team to offload various parts of ACME to GPUs.

From Oak Ridge National Laboratory
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