14C.2 Year-to-Year Changes in the Earth System: A Study of the Carbon Cycle using NASA Observations and the GEOS Model

Thursday, 11 January 2018: 10:45 AM
Salon J (Hilton) (Austin, Texas)
Steven Pawson, GMAO, Greenbelt, MD; and R. Gelaro, L. Ott, W. M. Putman, A. Chatterjee, R. Koster, E. Lee, T. Oda, B. Weir, and F. zeng

The Goddard Earth Observing System (GEOS) model has been developed in the Global Modeling and Assimilation Office (GMAO) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. From its roots in chemical transport and as a General Circulation Model, the GEOS model has been extended to an Earth System Model based on a modular construction using the Earth System Modeling Framework (ESMF), combining elements developed in house in the GMAO with others that are imported through collaborative research. It is used extensively for research and for product generation, both as a free-running model and as the core of the GMAO's data assimilation system. In recent years, the GMAO's modeling and assimilation efforts have been strongly supported by Piers Sellers, building on both his earlier legacy as an observationally oriented model developer and his post-astronaut career as a dynamic leader into new territory. Piers' long-standing interest in the carbon cycle and the combination of models with observations motivates this presentation, which will focus on the representation of the carbon cycle in the GEOS Earth System Model. Examples will include: (i) the progression from specified land-atmosphere surface fluxes to computations with an interactive model component (Catchment-CN), along with constraints on vegetation distributions using satellite observations; (ii) the use of high-resolution satellite observations to constrain human-generated inputs to the atmosphere; (iii) studies of the consistency of the observed atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations with those in the model simulations. The presentation will focus on year-to-year variations in elements of the carbon cycle, specifically on how the observations can inform the representation of mechanisms in the model and lead to integrity in global carbon dioxide simulations. Further, applications of the GEOS model to the planning of new carbon-climate observations will be addressed, as an example of the work that was strongly supported by Piers in the last months of his leadership of Earth Science at NASA Goddard.
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