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A hierarchy of models is used in the department spanning global circulation, mesoscale regional, microscale flow and low-dimensional process models. Those models developed and maintained by the department are described here:


The KMCM (Kühlungsborn Mechanistic general Circulation Model) and HIAMCM (High-Altitude Mechanistic Circulation Model) are hydrostatic global circulation models developed and designed for the particular scientific tasks at IAP: Simulation of the general circulation from the surface to the thermosphere with special emphasis on dynamical interaction between different scales and altitude regions, and the physically consistent parameterization of unresolved scales. Compared to comprehensive climate models, they are idealized in some respects, as expressed by the term 'mechanistic'. Nevertheless, such processes are adjusted to be quantitatively realistic. While KMCM is used to analyze the dynamics of the middle atmosphere up to about 130 km, its extension HIAMCM includes neutral dynamics up to 450 km and capability of nudging. (Contact: Erich Becker or Urs Schaefer-Rolffs, Further information: KMCM/HIAMCM homepage)


The Chemistry Transport Model of the Leibniz Institute of Atmospheric Physics (CTM-IAP) has been developed at IAP over the last 25 years. It simulates the advective, molecular and turbulent diffusive transport, and the photochemistry of all relevant minor chemical constituents in the upper stratosphere–mesosphere-lower thermosphere. Additionally it has modules for the simulation of airglow from OH*, O2(b1Σg+), O(1S), and a simplified plasma chemistry of D- and E-regions. It can be driven by wind and temperature fields for the middle atmosphere from dynamical models or meteorological analyses. CTM-IAP was used to study effects of planetary waves, gravity waves, sudden stratospheric warmings, 11-year solar cycle, and anthropogenic changes on the photo-chemistry and airglow of the mesopause region. (Contact: Mykhaylo Grygalashvyly)