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Modeling and Data Infrastructure in Support of NOAA’s Global Models

“Software infrastructure for modeling and data services is needed to enable distributed and collaborative development of high performance, coupled models and the management and dissemination of model data and metadata. Development challenges include the difficulty of implementing common infrastructure standards across organizations, the growing complexity of models and modeling techniques, the increasing volume of model outputs, and the need to adapt to a continually changing computational environment. At NOAA, a specific challenge is the development of a coupled operational modeling system that can be configured for prediction over a range of temporal scales, spatial scales, and ensemble configurations.

We propose to engage in the following activities:
1. ESMF-based infrastructure support for modeling and data services. The Earth System Modeling Framework (ESMF) software is used to build and couple weather, climate, and related models, and to remap grids in data analysis and visualization applications. ESMF has been deployed in operational and research models at NOAA and other centers. We propose to maintain the software in partnership with other agencies (port, test, release, etc.), and to develop new ESMF capabilities for emerging scientific and technical requirements.

2. Development partnership with the CESM. The Community Earth System Model (CESM) is a critical development partner for ESMF, as CESM uses grid remapping and other elements of the ESMF software, and provides requirements and active feedback that enable the framework to track current climate research directions. Further, CESM’s open source code, excellent documentation, and robust governance structure have helped to create an open, collaborative community of users and contributors. We plan to leverage CESM best practices for NOAA global models.

3. Development of the coupled NEMS system for a more capable, user-friendly CFS and a single framework for EMC/CPC. The NOAA Environmental Modeling System (NEMS) is an ESMF-based coupled model capable of spanning weather to climate time scales. We will continue integration of atmosphere, ocean, sea ice, wave, and land components within NEMS with the goal of creating a candidate model for the operational Climate Forecast System (CFS) version 3.

4. Climate data product development and operation. We will continue development of a suite of interconnected capabilities for documenting, searching, accessing, and performing operations on climate data. A main task is to evolve the Earth System CoG collaboration environment, which is becoming the primary user interface to the Earth System Grid Federation (ESGF) distributed data archive, to support CMIP6 and other MIPs. Tasks will include integrating CoG with the visualization capabilities in GrADS.

The work outlined here directly addresses the need for common modeling and data infrastructure, identified in multiple national reports and in the NOAA Next Generation Strategic Plan. Modeling activities will directly benefit NOAA’s seamless suite of forecast products, particularly the gap at lead times of 2-4 weeks; will provide a platform for more systematically addressing the issues of model biases; and will enable smoother, more efficient, and more rigorous transition to operations of research developments at partner institutions and in the broader research community. Improvements to data products will promote accessibility, understanding, and collaborative analysis of climate model outputs.”

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