Scientific computing

Numerical simulations of the global climate system rely on complex hardware and software. To push current global climate models to the kilometer-scale and beyond with a reasonable performance of at least one simulated year per day requires a more than three orders of magnitude increase in computational throughput. To meet these goals an efficient use of emerging exa-scale computing platforms is mandatory. So, the code needs to be well portable. New hardware alone will not solve this problem, but work is required on several levels: New algorithmic approaches, rethinking of our traditional workflow and how we address the increasing amount of data also have to be on the agenda to meet future climate science goals. With our focus on the central projects Sapphire and Ruby, and under scientific leadership in a strategic sense we advance and sustain the scientific modeling IT infrastructure of MPI-M as well as the model development in the different departments.

In the area of High Performance Computing the MPI-M co-operates very closely with the German Climate Compute Center (DKRZ), but also other institutions of the Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe (PrACE) and Gauss initiatives. Of very high importance for MPI-M is the relation to Germany’s National Meteorological Service (DWD) as the major development partner of the ICON model and a major player in the weather and Earth system modelling field in Germany. Teaming up with DWD and DKRZ for software development and performance optimization as well as with the Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT) for chemistry model solutions, and growing this partnership is of central importance for MPI-M and the German national modelling landscape. These partnerships will also foster MPI-M’s role in the larger activities on the European floor, like the infrastructure aspects of climate modelling supported by projects like the Centre of Excellence in Simulation of Weather and Climate in Europe (ESiWACE), coordinated by DKRZ.

MPI-M develops and supports an IT environment enabling scientists to understand Earth’s changing climate, including a well-functioning interface to the DKRZ environment. We provide centralized IT for our scientists since centralized know-how and experience ensures effective, consistent, and cost-effective support. This currently ranges from hardware procurement and repair, software environment, and websites to server and network administration as well as central storage. Additional new services are developed and deployed in close alignment with the scientific goals of the MPI-M. A wide range of applications, servers and hardware is needed to provide the best research environment for our staff.