2010 Annual Report

A Message from the Director

Roger Wakimoto

With another year coming to a close, it is helpful to cast a look back to see where we have been, taking stock of both internal and community-wide scientific achievements. With preparation for the next Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) well under way, it is worth noting that the Community Earth System Model (CESM) version 1.0 made its debut in June. This state-of-the-art model provides computer simulations of the Earth's past, present, and future climate states, with its outputs to be included in the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report expected to be released in 2013-2014. CESM, which builds on the Community Climate System Model, would not have been possible without funding from the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy, as well as tireless efforts by the modeling community and our own National Center for Atmospheric Research scientists. Congratulations to all for a significant achievement, and to Jim Hurrell who chairs the scientific steering committee that developed the model. 

Among other notable accomplishments, ground-breaking for the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center (NWSC), located in Cheyenne, Wyoming, occurred in early summer. With funding from NSF, and with our Wyoming partners, NCAR is in the process of building a world-class scientific computing facility that will serve scientists nationwide working on weather, climate, oceanography, solar physics, space weather, computational science, energy production, and carbon sequestration research. Opening in 2012, the NWSC will house one of the world’s fastest supercomputers for scientific research, as well as a premier data archival facility that will preserve valuable research data including extensive climate history records. Congratulations to Krista Laursen, NWSC project lead, and to the project team as a whole, all of whom have worked diligently behind the scenes to ensure provision of these community computing capabilities.

In addition to CESM and the NWSC, NCAR and our community participated in many other notable scientific efforts. PPlease take time to read the suite of stories that comprise the 2010 NCAR Annual Report for details on these projects and many other exciting research efforts occurring in 2010.

In addition, I encourage you to see the annual reports created by each of our Laboratories, Programs and our Observatory. These provide a further variety and breadth of details on 2010 work.

With best wishes for 2011 and sincere thanks for your ongoing support, and the hard work of the past year,
Roger