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Los Alamos National Laboratory

Los Alamos National Laboratory

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The art of climate modeling

The paint-like swirls of this visualization from Los Alamos National Laboratory depict global water-surface temperatures, with the surface texture driven by vorticity.
March 12, 2015
The paint-like swirls of this visualization from Los Alamos National Laboratory depict global water-surface temperatures, with the surface texture driven by vorticity.

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The paint-like swirls of this visualization from Los Alamos National Laboratory depict global water-surface temperatures, with the surface texture driven by vorticity. Cool temperatures are designated by blues and warmer temperatures by reds. Trapped regions of warmer water (red) adjacent to the Gulf Stream off the eastern coast of the U.S. indicate the model’s capability to simulate eddy transport of heat within the ocean, a key component necessary to accurately simulate global climate change.
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This global eddy-resolving ocean simulation is conducted using the Model for Prediction Across Scales Ocean (MPAS-O) component of the Accelerated Climate Model for Energy (ACME). This multiscale simulation varies in resolution from 15km in the North Atlantic to 75km globally elsewhere.  It is driven by normal year forcing for winds with restoring at the surface to data from the World Ocean Circulation Experiment. The visualization was produced using ParaView with the water surface temperature field depicted in pseudocolor and the surface texture provided by vorticity. Cool temperatures are designated by blues and warmer temperatures by reds. Trapped regions of warmer water (red) adjacent to the Gulf Stream off the eastern coast of the U.S. eastern seaboard indicate capability of model to simulate eddy transport of heat within the ocean, a key model capability needed to accurately simulate global climate change.


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