Catalyst

The `Cooperative Agreement To Analyze variabiLity, change and predictabilitY in the earth SysTem' (CATALYST) represents a sustained commitment by the Department of Energy (DOE) and the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) to perform foundational research toward advancing a robust understanding of modes of variability and change using models, observations and process studies.

Presentations and Agenda for site visit

Hilton Washington D.C./Rockville Hotel

Day One-September 19, 2017

7:15-8:30AM Continental breakfast available

8:00 - 9:00AM Executive session (BER and Reviewers)

Session 1 (9:00AM-1:00PM): CATALYST Overview (presentation times include time for questions)

9:00 - 9:10AM Welcome, Introductions, agenda (Gerald Meehl)

9:10 - 9:20AM Warren Washington Historical context for the UCAR/DOE Cooperative Agreement

9:20 - 9:50AM Gerald Meehl Overview of CATALYST

9:50 - 10:00AM Susan Bates Proposed model simulations and computer resources

10:00 - 10:15AM Morning Break

10:15AM - 1:00PM CATALYST Science Topics

Science questions to address Research Objectives presented by Research Objective Team Leads:

Haiyan Teng: Research Objective 1 science topic overview

Aixue Hu: Research Objective 2 science topic overview

Brian Medeiros: Research Objective 3 science topic overview (Part 1)

Ben Sanderson: Research Objective 3 science topic overview (Part 2)

Specific science topic examples:

Claudia Tebaldi: Probabilistic methods

Joe Tribbia: Mesoscale Convective Systems

Angie Pendergrass: Precipitation-producing systems

Rich Neale: MJO, blocking, ACME collaborations


1:00PM Lunch served

Session 2 (1:30PM-2:30PM): Poster Session

Aixue Hu: Internal climate variability and future regional sea level rise

Gary Strand: CESM workflow refactor

Christine Shields: ARTMIP: Atmospheric River Tracking Method Intercomparison Project

Angie Pendergrass: Precipitation variability increases in a warmer climate

Susan Bates Future change in cyclones in a high-resolution version of the CESM1.3

Julie Caron and Joe Tribbia: Sub-seasonal to decadal prediction in CESM: Initialization

Brian Medeiros: Climate sensitivity through the CESM model hierarchy

Haiyan Teng: Causes of extreme ridges that induce California drought

Ben Sanderson: Model weighting scheme for the Climate Science Special Report

Gerald Meehl: The role of the Southern Hemisphere semiannual oscillation as a precursor to the development of El Niño events

Nan Rosenbloom: Mentoring a new generation of research scientists

Claudia Tebaldi: Record highs and lows in CESM and observations

Rich Neale: Modeling sub-seasonal variability: An Emergent Climate Metric

2:30 - 2:45PM Afternoon Break

Session 3 (2:45PM-6:15PM): Cooperative Agreement Progress to Date and Synergies

2:45 - 4:15PM Progress Reports, DOE/UCAR Cooperative Agreement, 2012-2017 (speakers to include presentation and time for questions)

4:15 - 5:15PM Discussion and questions from reviewers

5:15 - 6:15PM Closed session discussion with DOE and Reviewers

Day Two-September 20, 2017

7:15 - 8:30AM Continental breakfast available

Session 4 (8:00AM-1:30PM)

8:00 - 9:00AM Executive session (BER and Reviewers)

9:00 - 11:00AM Reviewer Committee and CATALYST team - Q and A

11:00 - 11:15AM Morning break

11:15 - 12:30PM Closed session for Reviewers - writing

12:30 - 1:30PM Closed session working lunch

More information

Download full proposal

CVs / People in CATALYST

CATALYST proposal details

The CATALYST science themes define the scope and integrative goals of the proposal:

CATALYST Science Themes
  1. Gain an understanding of the interplay between external forcing (solar, volcano, greenhouse gases, aerosols, etc.) and internal variability across timescales by configuring and applying an earth system simulation capability that will be used to improve fundamental understanding of predictability of the earth system and inform our understanding of how variability could change on multi-decadal timescales
  2. Identify processes and mechanisms that characterize high impact events, and quantify how these events could change in the future (heat extremes, droughts, floods, mid-latitude storms, hurricanes, sea level, atmospheric rivers, ocean extremes, AMOC-related variability)
  3. Assess parametric and structural uncertainty in earth system models, relate earth system variability and change to fundamental uncertainties and feedbacks, and evaluate model improvements using a hierarchy of models and diagnostic tools with an emphasis on optimization and calibration at the development timescale.

Three Science Research Objectives that support these overarching science themes and constitute the experimental design of the present CATALYST proposal:

CATALYST Research Objectives

Research Objective 1

Gain an understanding of the interplay between external forcing (solar, volcano, greenhouse gases, aerosols, etc.) and internal variability across timescales by configuring and applying an earth system simulation capability that will be used to improve fundamental understanding of the predictability of the earth system, and understand how variability could change on multi-decadal timescales;

Science questions:

  • How is subseasonal to interannual variability represented in earth system models, and how may these phenomena change in the future?
  • How do modes of internally generated earth system variability in the different ocean basins interact and influence the manifestation of global decadal earth system variability?
  • What is the seasonal to decadal predictability of the NAO?
  • Can we formulate formal probabilistic/statistical models to synthesize information from hindcast experiments and to optimize results from forecast experiments?
  • Can we use long-term changes to better understand and detect short- to near- to mid-term trends and emerging signals in model simulations and observations?

Research Objective 2

Identify the processes and mechanisms that characterize high impact events, and quantify how these events could change in the future (heat extremes, droughts, floods, mid-latitude storms, hurricanes, sea level, atmospheric rivers, ocean extremes, AMOC-related variability);

Science questions:

  • What processes and feedbacks influence present-day and future earth system variability and change associated with precipitation extremes and drought (daily, to seasonal “flash droughts”, to multi-year droughts), and what is their interplay with temperature extremes in terms of intensity, frequency and magnitude on various spatial and temporal scales?
  • Can we capture ocean temperature extremes in an earth system model and what processes and mechanisms produce these heat extremes?
  • What is the role of tropical cyclones in earth system variability and change, what will be the intraseasonal, seasonal and interannual characteristics of tropical cyclones in a warmer system, and how will these changes affect their role in the earth system, particularly on ocean heat transport?
  • What is the ocean’s role in atmospheric river (AR) development, especially related to ocean model resolution and modes of natural variability?
  • What are the synoptic-scale storm features that produce precipitation extremes (e.g. low centers vs. frontal vs. larger scale stratiform vs. atmospheric rivers)?
  • How will mid-latitude variability and extremes associated with meso-scale features such as mesoscale convective systems (MCSs) and synoptic-scale mid-latitude storms change in the future?
  • What is the nature of mid-latitude/high-latitude interactions in terms of storms and cryosphere responses?
  • How much and how fast will sea level rise, what governs global and regional sea level rise uncertainty (e.g. AMOC, ice sheet melt), and what is the combined effect of sea level rise and storm surge?

Research Objective 3

Assess parametric and structural uncertainty in earth system models, relate earth system variability and change to fundamental uncertainties and feedbacks, and evaluate model improvements using a hierarchy of models and diagnostic tools with an emphasis on optimization and calibration at the development timescale.

Science questions:

  • What are the sources of structural model uncertainty, and can these uncertainties be reduced through judicious use of modeling hierarchies and advanced diagnostic techniques?
  • How can short-term initialized experiments (CAPT framework) help to assess and better understand model processes?
  • How do clouds and precipitation respond to external forcings, and then feedback on the earth system?
  • How can we better understand precipitation processes and variability?