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Multimedia Gallery - Visualization

Predicting Climate Change Impact on River Flow


In research to see whether a detectable global warming signal has affected the hydrology of the western U.S., causing snowmelt and river flow to come earlier in the year, SDSC is collaborating with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) at UCSD. Doug Rotman, Bala Govindasamy, and Art Mirin of LLNL first run a climate model for the entire globe. The massive data set is then archived at SDSC and distributed via SDSC's Storage Resource Broker data grid to SIO, where Hugo Hidalgo downscales the results for a sharper view of the western U.S., and Tim Barnett and David Pierce analyze and compare the results to observed snowpack and river flow measurements. Finally, SDSC's Amit Chourasia creates visualizations of the results. The image from a 50-year simulation shows the flow volume (aqua-colored cylinders) in the Columbia River (blue line) fed by melting snow cover (white) on one day in December 1980.
Image: A. Chourasia, SDSC.
Source: San Diego Supercomputer Center, UC San Diego

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