Community Ice Sheet Model, Glimmer-CISM: beta release now available

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Community Ice Sheet Model, Glimmer-CISM: beta release now available


Dear Colleagues,

We would like to draw your attention to an initial "beta" release of
the Community Ice Sheet Model, Glimmer-CISM. The Glimmer-CISM effort
emerged from the open source GLIMMER ice sheet model in response to the
conclusions of a number of recent workshops stressing the need to
address current ice sheet model shortcomings from a common platform. At
present, Glimmer-CISM is primarily a joint U.S./U.K. effort with support
from DOE, NSF, NASA, and NERC.

Glimmer-CISM is rapidly becoming a viable, open-source (GNU Public
License) research platform for conducting continental and regional-scale
investigations of higher-order ice dynamical phenomena.

The "beta" release includes the following features:

(1) Thermo-mechanically coupled shallow-ice approximation ("0-order")
ice dynamics and mass conservation (see Rutt et al. (2009)^1).

(2) Two "first-order" ice dynamics solution schemes (based on the
Pattyn-Bocek-Johnson (PB&J) and Payne and Price (PP) models).

(3) Two advection schemes to compute mass transport and conservation
when using higher-order dynamics.

(4) A test and example suite of model configuration files and drivers
that includes:
(a) ISMIP-HOM higher-order model intercomparison^2 benchmarking tests A
and C, and scripts for comparing/plotting output relative to the
benchmark results.
(b)  Several idealized ice shelf experiments (confined and circular
(c) EISMINT-Ross benchmark test case, and scripts for comparing/plotting
output relative to the benchmark results.
(d) EISMINT-I and II model intercomparisons for shallow ice models^3.

Future releases will include the following additional improvements:

(1) Modules to enable coupling with the Community Climate System Model

(2) Subroutine re-factoring to allow for more modular code design.

(3) Ability to call third-party solver packages (e.g. Trilinos).

(4) Ability to run the model on multi-processor machines (using MPI).

The beta release is available for public download from the project web page:

and is publicly accessible. For a summary of the configuration options
that enable higher-order runs, see section 1.3.1 (p.6+) of the users
manual. More discussion particular to the higher-order test cases is
available in the "readme" files in the "tests" directory.

Potential users are advised that there is currently no central resource
to make suggested changes to the code or to support its application to
specific problems. In these cases, users are encouraged to make use of
Glimmer-CISM users mailing list, which you can register for at:

Persons interested in participating in the development of Glimmer-CISM
are asked to inform the steering committee of their intentions and
register at:

It is also recommended that you join the developers mailing list at:

      Glimmer-CISM steering committee

Magnus Hagdorn
School of GeoSciences
University of Edinburgh

Jesse Johnson
Department of Computer Science
University of Montana

William Lipscomb
Fluid Dynamics and Solid Mechanics Group
Los Alamos National Laboratory

Tony Payne
School of Geographical Sciences
University of Bristol

Stephen Price
Fluid Dynamics and Solid Mechanics Group
Los Alamos National Laboratory

Ian Rutt
Department of Geography
School of the Environment & Society
Swansea University


(1) Rutt, I. C., M. Hagdorn, N. R. J. Hulton, and A. J. Payne. 2009. The
Glimmer community ice sheet model. Journal of Geophysical Research 114:
F02004. doi:10.1029/2008JF001015.

(2) Pattyn, F., Perichon, L., Aschwanden, A., Breuer, B., de Smedt, B.,
Gagliardini, O., Gudmundsson, G. H., Hindmarsh, R., Hubbard, A.,
Johnson, J. V., Kleiner, T., Konovalov, Y., Martin, C., Payne, A. J.,
Pollard, D., Price, S., Rückamp, M., Saito, F., Soucek, O., Sugiyama,
S., and Zwinger, T. 2008. Benchmark experiments for higher-order and
full Stokes ice sheet models (ISMIP-HOM), The Cryosphere, 2, 95-108.


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