Improving Models for Climate System Projections

The interactions between aerosols and the land and ocean will have important consequences for human health, ecosystem services, and climate feedback over the next several decades. In particular, human-caused aerosols from direct industrial emissions and landscape fires impact the atmosphere and the biogeochemistry of the ocean and land. A better and deeper understanding of these interactions is needed.

Natalie M. Mahowald, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, and Peter G. Hess, Biological and Environmental Engineering, are leading a team of researchers to improve the modeling capability and performance of the Department of Energy’s Accelerated Climate Model for Energy (ACME). Their research focuses specifically on improving short-term, high-resolution projections of climate. 

In collaboration with University of California, Irvine and University of Illinois—with funding totaling $1.2 million—researchers are improving representation of fire dynamics in boreal and tropical ecosystems, estimates of industrial emissions of iron and phosphorus, and the representation of atmospheric iron, phosphorus, and nitrogen transport, chemistry, and deposition. The team will also improve representation of how iron, phosphorus, and nitrogen deposition impact ocean and land biogeochemistry. Using simulations and experiments, researchers are working to improve various models of aerosol interactions and how they impact the atmosphere, ocean, and land—the overall climate system.

Cornell Researchers

Funding Received

$520 Thousand spanning 3 years