An Introduction to Three-Dimensional Climate Modeling

Second Edition

Warren M. Washington, National Center for Atmospheric Research

Claire L. Parkinson, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

"This is an excellent book, well formatted, readable, and very informative to those entering the field or its neighbors."
--Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., June 2006

"An excellent second edition...Compliments to the authors for a useful and carefully written book.  I will assign it to my new Ph.D. students in the same way as I have asked them for almost two decades to read the first edition."
--Oceanography, Vol. 18, No. 3, Sept. 2005

"This completely updated book provides a clear, unified and comprehensive view of global climate models, consisting of atmosphere, ocean, land/vegetation and sea ice components, and their application to simulations of present, past and future climates. The book will serve well as a text for graduate students, a valuable reference for climate specialists, and an attractive entry point for scientists from many disciplines who are interested in climate modeling and its applications."
--John E. Kutzbach, University of Wisconsin

This book provides an introduction to the development of three-dimensional climate models, including their four major components: atmosphere, ocean, land/vegetation, and sea ice. The fundamental processes in each component and the interactions among them are explained using basic scientific principles, and elements of the numerical methods used in solving the model equations are also provided. The authors show how the theory and models grew historically and how well they are able to account for known aspects of the climate system. This book is written so that a reader who is only vaguely aware of climate models will be able to gain an understanding of what the models are attempting to simulate, how the models are constructed, what the models have succeeded in simulating, and how the models are being used. Examples illustrating the use of the models to simulate aspects of the current climate system are followed by examples illustrating the application of the models to important scientific areas such as understanding paleoclimates, the last millennium, the El Nino/Southern Oscillation, and the effects of increasing greenhouse gas concentrations on future climate change. The book is appropriate for scientists, graduate students, and upper-level undergraduates and can be used as a textbook or for self study and reference. The authors have considerably updated the book from the first edition by adding descriptions of many techniques and results developed since the mid-1980s.

About the Authors

Warren Washington, left, has been a scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) since 1963 and is head of the Climate Change Research Section in the Climate and Global Dynamics Division at NCAR. He is the Chair of the Presidential appointed National Science Board and he is an internationally recognized expert in atmospheric science and climate research, who serves on the Secretary of Energy’s Department of Energy Biological and Environmental Research Advisory Committee (BERAC). He is a member of the American Philosophical Society, the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academies of Science Coordinating Committee on Global Change, and distinguished alumni of Oregon State and Pennsylvania State Universities. He is a fellow of American Meteorology Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  In 1994, Dr. Washington served as President of American Meteorological Society. He was awarded the National Medal of Science in 2010.

Claire L. Parkinson, right, has been a climatologist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center since 1978, with a research emphasis on polar sea ice and climate change. She is also Project Scientist for the Aqua
atellite mission, aimed at improved understanding of the coupled atmosphere/ocean/land/ice system, has done field work in both polar regions, and has written books on satellite Earth observations and the history of science. She has a B.A. from Wellesley College and a Ph.D. from Ohio State University and has served on committees for NASA, NOAA, and the National Academy of Sciences. She is a Fellow of both the American Meteorological Society and Phi Beta Kappa and received a NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal in 2003 and the Goldthwait Polar Medal from Ohio State's Byrd Polar Research Center in 2004.

Print Book
ISBN 978-1-891389-35-1, 380 pages, Copyright 2005, Casebound.
List Price US$78.00
Publisher's Discount Price US$66.30
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eISBN 978-1-938787-56-0, 380 pages, Copyright 2005.
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