Center for Computing Research (CCR)

Center for Computing Research


Aeras: A Next Generation Global Atmosphere Model

Aeras (Greek for "air") is a next generation global atmosphere model. It is built on top of Albany, a code developed to enable rapid prototyping of scientific application codes, that leverages all of Sandia's advanced scientific computing infrastructure. Codes built on Albany are, from inception, parallel, either explicit or implicit (with implicit solves supported by automatically generated Jacobians), capable of performing sensitivity analysis and uncertainty quantification, with a wide range of software quality controls from unit and regression testing to an advanced build system and version control. Albany, and by extension Aeras, was one of the first Sandia codes to be upgraded to become performance portable: the abilty to run efficiently on current and future advanced computing platforms, all using a single code base.

Two of these advanced features -- uncertainty quantification and performance portability -- are what make Aeras (along with the FELIX land ice model) truly next generation, and we hope a template for future climate model components, such as ocean and sea ice models. In fact, Aeras currently serves as the template for the current Energy Exascale Earth Model (E3SM) atmosphere model refactor project.

Aeras numerics are similar to the E3SM Atmosphere Model - Spectral Elements (EAM-SE), using spectral elements on a cubed sphere for horizontal discretization, a hybrid vertical coordinate, and hyperviscosity for stabilization. Albany provides Aeras with a diverse suite of time-stepping options, from explicit leap frog and Runge-Kutta to fully implicit. We are also implemented a simplified Kessler cloud physics package, as a demonstration of coupling to a physics parameterization.

Associated Software: E3SM  Kokkos  Trilinos  

Contact: Spotz, William (Bill),
SAND2014-16640 W