Articles | Volume 11, issue 5
Geosci. Model Dev., 11, 1799–1821, 2018
Geosci. Model Dev., 11, 1799–1821, 2018

Review and perspective paper 08 May 2018

Review and perspective paper | 08 May 2018

Crossing the chasm: how to develop weather and climate models for next generation computers?

Bryan N. Lawrence et al.

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Cited articles

Alexander, K. and Easterbrook, S. M.: The software architecture of climate models: a graphical comparison of CMIP5 and EMICAR5 configurations, Geosci. Model Dev., 8, 1221–1232,, 2015. a, b
Asanovic, K., Bodik, R., Catanzaro, B. C., Gebis, J. J., Husbands, P., Keutzer, K., Patterson, D. A., Plishker, W. L., Shalf, J., Williams, S. W., and Yelick, K.: The Landscape of Parallel Computing Research: A View from Berkeley, Tech. Rep. UCB/EECS-2006-183, University of California, Berkely, USA, 2006. a
Baker, A. H., Hammerling, D. M., Levy, M. N., Xu, H., Dennis, J. M., Eaton, B. E., Edwards, J., Hannay, C., Mickelson, S. A., Neale, R. B., Nychka, D., Shollenberger, J., Tribbia, J., Vertenstein, M., and Williamson, D.: A new ensemble-based consistency test for the Community Earth System Model (pyCECT v1.0), Geosci. Model Dev., 8, 2829–2840,, 2015. a
Balaji, V., Benson, R., Wyman, B., and Held, I.: Coarse-grained component concurrency in Earth system modeling: parallelizing atmospheric radiative transfer in the GFDL AM3 model using the Flexible Modeling System coupling framework, Geosci. Model Dev., 9, 3605–3616,, 2016. a, b, c
Balaji, V., Maisonnave, E., Zadeh, N., Lawrence, B. N., Biercamp, J., Fladrich, U., Aloisio, G., Benson, R., Caubel, A., Durachta, J., Foujols, M.-A., Lister, G., Mocavero, S., Underwood, S., and Wright, G.: CPMIP: measurements of real computational performance of Earth system models in CMIP6, Geosci. Model Dev., 10, 19–34,, 2017. a
Short summary
Weather and climate models consist of complex software evolving in response to both scientific requirements and changing computing hardware. After years of relatively stable hardware, more diversity is arriving. It is possible that this hardware diversity and the pace of change may lead to an inability for modelling groups to manage their software development. This chasm between aspiration and reality may need to be bridged by large community efforts rather than traditional in-house efforts.