Our research of the climate system does not only take place in our offices, at expert conferences or as scientific publications, but we always try to also make our approaches and results accessible to the broader public. Therefore, we often explain our research in public talks, popular science articles, books, essays, online lectures and videos.
What is a climate model? Which questions can we address using climate models – and which not? Which approaches are we working on to further improve climate models? How will the climate change in future? How do the rapid climate changes at polar regions impact other latitudes, e.g., the weather and climate in Europe? What kinds of observations in Arctic and Antarctic regions are most urgently needed to improve our understanding, our models, and our predictions of atmosphere, sea ice, and ocean?
Answers to these and many more questions can be found in the following, diverse contributions. Do you have further questions or remarks? We are looking forward to receiving your message to Katharina Kirchhoff!
... and five more questions we have always wanted to ask a climate modeler
There are words and terms, where we don't really have a certain picture on our mind, when we read them or hear about them in the news. We get a vague idea, what they could mean - but we do not know it for certain.
The term "climate model" is one of them. Somehow it always needs an explanation, but you rarely get them. We want to change that. Our climate model expert Helge Gößling is answering our questions and explains, what is meant when scientists use the general term "climate model" and what they are actually working on.
No-one can say for sure whether the next few days will be snowy or sunny at the North Pole: the weather forecast for the Arctic is far less reliable than for other parts of the world, where an extensive grid of automatic weather stations regularly transmits real-time data on barometric pressure, temperature and wind to the weather services scattered around the globe. Today there's still very little data to be found at the Earth's poles. An international research initiative spearheaded by the AWI wants to change that, and has declared the Year of Polar Prediction, which will continue from mid-2017 to mid-2019.
The Year of Polar Prediction officially began in May. Through mid 2019, there will be increased measurements of the weather, sea ice and oceans in order to improve environmental forecasts in the Arctic and Antarctic. Climate scientist Thomas Jung is responsible for coordinating and implementing the Year of Polar Prediction. In this interview, he talks about how the weather and climate at the Earth’s poles is changing, how accurately weather and sea-ice conditions can be predicted today, and which commercial usage interests could arise in a changing Arctic.