Climate predictions for “The Day After Tomorrow”

On June 22, 2004, while Hollywood blockbuster “The Day After Tomorrow” is still in the cinemas, the climateprediction.net project is launching a new experiment exploring some of the science behind the film. The new phase of the project aims to investigate how predictions made for rising carbon dioxide might change if the thermo-haline circulation in the oceans were to slow down. Alteration to the flow of the Gulf Stream is an extreme scenario, and extreme scenarios make great films, but this experiment is also important for practical planning and knowing how likely it is that such events will actually happen.

The climateprediction.net project is nearing the end of its first funded period, and KMi researchers (Martin Dzbor, John Domingue, Enrico Motta, and Marc Eisenstadt) have contributed to the initial success by launching and running an interactive forum for the experiment participants and developing the world-first semantic filtering system seamlessly embedded in the web browsers. The latter uses our Magpie infrastructure and a demonstrator containing a partial climate glossary and services can be downloaded from Magpie web site.

During first ten months since launching, the project has attracted 49,000 participants in 130 countries. In terms of computing power, our participants simulated a total of 1.9 million years of the Earth climate, with over 29,000 fully completed, unique runs. The latest news from the project team include new interactive visualization packages and migration to the BOINC platform that will enable not only Windows but also Linux and Mac users to help out with the world’s largest climate modelling experiment.

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