Volume-Rendered Global Atmospheric Model

  • Released Sunday, August 10, 2014
  • Updated Friday, November 25, 2016 at 8:32AM
  • ID: 4180

This visualization shows early test renderings of a global computational model of Earth's atmosphere based on data from NASA's Goddard Earth Observing System Model, Version 5 (GEOS-5). This particular run, called 7km GEOS-5 Nature Run (7km-G5NR), was run on a supercomputer, spanned 2 years of simulation time at 30 minute intervals, and produced petabytes of output. The model uses a 7.5 km cube-sphere parameterization. Geographic coordinate output volumes from the model are 5760 x 2881 x 72 voxels per time step. For each voxel numerous physical parameters are available such as temperature, wind speed and direction, pressure, humidity, etc. This visualziation uses a combination of the CLOUD and TAUIR parameters.

The visualization spans a little more than 7 days of simulation time which is 354 time steps. The time period was chosen because a simulated category-4 typhoon developed off the coast of China. The frames were rendered using Renderman. Brickmap volumes generated for each time step are about 2.6 gigabytes. This short visualization referenced nearly a terabyte of brickmap files. The 7 day period is repeated several times during the course of the visualization.

This visualization was presented at SIGGRAPH 2014 during the Dailies session.


Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio


This visualization can be found in the following series:

Datasets used in this visualization

GEOS-5 Cubed-Sphere (A.K.A. GEOS-5 Atmospheric Model on the Cubed-Sphere)
ModelNASA GMAO07/16/2005 through 07/24/2005

The model is the GEOS-5 atmospheric model on the cubed-sphere, run at 14-km global resolution for 30-days. GEOS-5 is described here http://gmao.gsfc.nasa.gov/systems/geos5/ and the cubed-sphere work is described here http://sivo.gsfc.nasa.gov/cubedsphere_overview.html.

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