Wealth from Oceans Update banner
May 2006 National Research Flagship www.csiro.au/wealthfromoceans
 

Photo: Dr Tony Hirst, modelling development leader

Dr Tony Hirst, modelling development leader

Advanced climate change model in action

Climate change simulations are underway for the Australian region using an advanced version of the highly-regarded CSIRO Mark 3 coupled oceans-atmosphere model.

Dr Tony Hirst, who leads modelling development at the Wealth from Oceans Flagship, says the Mark 3.5 model will have application in a key area of the Flagship's research in long-term climate change simulations.

Dr Hirst said the new model displays significant improvement in several key attributes, particularly in modelling a region influential in climate change, the Southern Ocean.

Primary improvements are in Southern Ocean circulation, developing a more realistic Antarctic Circumpolar Current, and in the transport of surface water into the deep ocean. The latter process is particularly important in the sequestering of heat and carbon into the deep ocean, which influences the rate and pattern of warming globally.

"With these enhancements to our models we are now developing climate change simulations that can embrace a number of new modelling elements," says Dr Hirst.

The key element involves a more sophisticated way of representing the effect of the transport of heat and other oceanic properties by oceanic eddies, which is a particularly important process in the Southern Ocean. Other elements include -

  • Upgraded modelling of sea ice behaviour
  • Ocean surface current speed included in wind stress calculations
  • An improved method of handling river flows

The research is part of the Flagship's Marine Climate Change Modelling and Simulation project. Its core objective is to develop national capacity to forecast the impact of climate change on the marine environment.

Pattern of warming in Mk3.5

Mk3.5 SST
Climate change control
1991-2000

Figure1:
Figure1: Chart showing average warming rate of sea surface temperatures compared to earth's global mean temperature for period 1991-2000. These observed data are used to verify predictive modelling, including the mark 3.5 Model

Figure1: Chart showing average warming rate of sea surface temperatures compared to earth's global mean temperature for period 1991-2000. These observed data are used to verify predictive modelling, including the mark 3.5 Model

IN THIS EDITION:

Update Home

Message from the Director

Advanced climate change model in action

Southern Ocean impacts
on Australian climate

CSIRO fellowship for biofouling expert

CSIRO scientists elected to Australian Academy of Science

Farming expert sets the scene


MEET THE SCIENTIST:

Photo: Dr Richard Matear

Meet Dr Richard Matear, Climate Scientist for
Wealth From Oceans
 
Meet
Dr Richard Matear


EARLIER UPDATES 

December  2005

September 2005

April 2005

December 2004

 

The Wealth from Oceans Flagship is a CSIRO initiative and part of the National Research Flagships program that aims to deliver scientific solutions to advance Australia's most important national objectives. One of the largest scientific initiatives ever mounted in Australia, it aligns closely with the Federal Government's National Research Priorities. The initiative brings together our national research resources to deliver breakthroughs in fields ranging from healthcare to light metals and the environment.

Wealth from Oceans Flagship
CSIRO

Editor: Sylvia Bell
PO Box 93
North Ryde NSW 1670
Phone: +61 2 9490 8006
Fax: +61 2 9490 8811
editor.oceans@csiro.au

CSIRO logo