Welcome to UK Earth System Model (UKESM) News from the Joint Weather and Climate Research Programme (JWCRP).

The UK Earth system modelling project is a joint venture between the Met Office and the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC) to develop and apply a world-leading Earth System Model.

If you like to get in touch, please email us at ukesm@ncas.ac.uk



Final steps to UKESM1

by Colin Jones and the UKESM core group.

As discussed in the 5th UKESM Newsletter, over the past 12 months we have been working intensively on the scientific calibration of UKESM1, an important and necessary final step when a set of complex component models are coupled together into a fully coupled Earth system model (ESM). This calibration effort is now largely complete and the 1st version of UKESM1 will be ready for scientific use in January 2018. At this point the UKESM core group will launch the first set of UKESM1 simulations contributing to the 6th Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP6). Read more…

Progress towards interactive Ice Sheets in UKESM1

by Robin Smith.

While the first version of UKESM1 will be released in January 2018, this version will not include an interactive treatment of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. An additional configuration of UKESM1 (UKESM1-IS) is under development to include such a facility. Once developed, UKESM1-IS will be at frontier of international efforts in coupled Earth system – ice sheet modelling. Read more…

Starting the CMIP6 simulations with HadGEM3 GC3.1

by Till Kuhlbrodt and Colin Jones.

Following finalization of the scientific evaluation of HadGEM3 GC3.1, the first set of “production” runs for the CMIP6 model intercomparison (Eyring et al., 2016) have now begun. These are being performed at the two spatial resolutions of HadGEM3 GC3.1: N96ORCA1 (CMIP6 tag: HadGEM3-GC31-LL) and N216ORCA025 (HadGEM3-GC31-MM). The former of these 2 constitutes the coupled physical model core of UKESM1. Read more…

Reflections on UKESM at the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition and Results from the visitors’ survey

by Alice Booth and Alberto Muñoz.

In the first week of July 2017, The Royal Society held their annual flagship Summer Science Exhibition. Attracting over 14,000 visitors every year, the exhibition remains as prestigious as it was at its creation, and is an incredible opportunity for members of the scientific community to present and discuss their work with the public. This year the UKESM project was one of the 22 exhibits at the event. Our stand, ‘A Model Earth’ consisted of a brilliant display, puzzles, an interactive quiz, climate games, information, and our crowd-pleaser: the interactive puffersphere globe. Read more about the event…
A survey prepared before the event to gauge how effective we were in at communicating our research to the general public was conducted with a total of 175 participants from a range of age groups. Results suggest the public had a relatively good understanding of climate change. However, the results did show a difference in opinions, depending on age, as to how rapidly the impacts of climate change might occur. The survey results also suggest that public understanding of climate modelling and the work climate scientists actually perform is currently quite low. Read more about the survey results: Read more about the survey results…


16 November 2017 – Earth System science at COP23 – Bonn, Germany:

Colin Jones, head of the UKESM project, together with Jason Lowe (Met Office and University of Leeds) and Matthew Gidden (International Institute of Applied Systems Analysis), presented at a side event, organised by the Met office, at the UK Pavilion in COP23. The event, entitled: ‘From science to policy: applying Earth system models’, showcased the policy relevance of Earth system models and addressed some of the high profile questions, such as: How can information from these models inform and support policy making in the areas of mitigation and adaptation to global change?; How the next generation of Earth system models will contribute to the next IPCC 6th Assessment Report; or What future human emission of greenhouse gases is compatible with realizing the Paris Accord?

11-14 November 2017 – Representing UKESM at CERN:

The CERN alumni network invited UKESM core group member Lee de Mora, to participate in a panel discussion at their annual careers event this November. The target audience for the event was current PhD students and early career scientists at CERN, who for whatever reason are considering moving to work in a different discipline. The goal of the event was to put these people in contact with CERN alumni working in other fields and to demonstrate that life is indeed possible for physicists outside the world of high energy physics. Read more about this report: Read more about this report… 

21-22 November 2017 – UKESM core group annual meeting and retreat in Bristol:

The UKESM core group recently met for a day at the annual team retreat in Bristol. The group analysed, reviewed and discussed the following topics: UKESM1 status, plans for the 1st set of CMIP6simulations, diagnostics and data for CMIP6 and a range of outstanding model development tasks for 2018. During their time in Bristol, the group also embarked on a team-building afternoon in the form a graffiti workshop where the artistic flair of some of the core group members finally came to the fore.


Recent additions to the UKESM Core Group:

Valeriu (V) Predoi, National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS): V joined the NCAS CMS group as a UKESM Core Member based at the University of Reading in April 2017. He previously worked in gravitational waves research and computational analyses, as part of the LIGO collaboration at Cardiff University. Prior to this V worked in the area of computational virology at Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada. He obtained a PhD in gravitational waves data analysis from Cardiff University in 2012. He will be working on a number of computationally-oriented projects including diagnostic pipeline development, data acquisition and processing, MIP conversion tools and general integration and optimization of both existing and future model evaluation tools. V is also contributes to the development of the interactive ice sheet version of UKESM1; UKESM-IS.