High Definition Clouds and Precipitation for Climate Prediction

HD(CP)² is a BMBF funded German-wide research initiative to improve our understanding of cloud and precipitation processes and their implications for climate prediction.

The first funding period of HD(CP)² focused on the the optimization of the ICON (Icosahedral non-hydrostatic general circulation) model for Large-Eddy simulation (ICON-LES) with very high-resolution (horizontal spacing of 100 m) and on the improvement of ground, in situ and satellite based observations of cloud and precipitation events. The second phase, which started in April 2016, has a somewhat different structure. The project is no longer organized around the development of tools and infrastructure, but rather on six different scientific questions related to cloud formation:

How do clouds respond to pertubations in their aerosol environment?

What are controlling factors for boundary layer clouds?

What are controlling factors for anvil cloud development?

To what extent does land-surface heterogeneity control cloud and precipitation development?

To what extent is convective organization important for climate?

How do clouds and convection influence the development of the storm tracks?

These questions are addressed in six synthesis projects that, along with observational and modelling efforts, constitute the HD(CP)² project.

High-resolution Cloud Simulations

This video shows a high-resolution cloud simulation for Germany, carried out on the supercomputer Mistral of the DKRZ (Deutsches Klimarechenzentrum). For this simulation a special cloud resolving version of ICON, the model that is utilized in HD(CP)², was used. The video shows the simulated evolution of clouds (white) and rainfall (blue) over entire Germany for a special day. Special aspects, such as cloud ice (pink), are also captured.The visualizations and the video editing were done by the DKRZ.


News about the project can be found here.


S1 - 20./21.9.16, Leipzig
S2 - 29./30.9.16, Köln
S3 - 10./11.10.16, Oberpfaffenhofen
O - 12./13.10.16, Hamburg

13.-16.02.17, München