Understanding and modelling the atmospheric storm tracks

Storm tracks are regions in the Earth’s middle latitudes where large-scale cyclones are prevalent, playing a key role in the weather and climate of those regions and of the Earth as a whole.

In a review paper in Nature Geoscience, we summarize the current scientific understanding of storm tracks and highlight the importance of a flexible modeling approach spanning a hierarchy of complexity in gaining such understanding. The key aim of the SeRC-funded CliMT project is precisely to develop a Python-based tool that can easily span this hierarchy. The figure shows an illustration of the climate modeling hierarchy.

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Reference: Shaw, T. A., M. Baldwin, E. A. Barnes, R. Caballero, C. I. Garfinkel, Y.-T. Hwang, C. Li, P. A. O'Gorman, G. Rivière, I. R. Simpson, and A. Voigt (2016): Understanding storm tracks and their response to climate change. Nat. Geosci., 9, 656-664