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Title: Design and results of the ice sheet model initialisation experiments initMIP-Greenland: an ISMIP6 intercomparison

Earlier large-scale Greenland ice sheet sea-level projections (e.g. those run during the ice2sea and SeaRISE initiatives) have shown that ice sheet initial conditions have a large effect on the projections and give rise to important uncertainties. Here, the goal of this initMIP-Greenland intercomparison exercise is to compare, evaluate, and improve the initialisation techniques used in the ice sheet modelling community and to estimate the associated uncertainties in modelled mass changes. initMIP-Greenland is the first in a series of ice sheet model intercomparison activities within ISMIP6 (the Ice Sheet Model Intercomparison Project for CMIP6), which is the primary activity within the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 6 (CMIP6) focusing on the ice sheets. Two experiments for the large-scale Greenland ice sheet have been designed to allow intercomparison between participating models of (1) the initial present-day state of the ice sheet and (2) the response in two idealised forward experiments. The forward experiments serve to evaluate the initialisation in terms of model drift (forward run without additional forcing) and in response to a large perturbation (prescribed surface mass balance anomaly); they should not be interpreted as sea-level projections. We present and discuss results that highlight the diversity of data sets, boundary conditions, and initialisationmore » techniques used in the community to generate initial states of the Greenland ice sheet. We find good agreement across the ensemble for the dynamic response to surface mass balance changes in areas where the simulated ice sheets overlap but differences arising from the initial size of the ice sheet. The model drift in the control experiment is reduced for models that participated in earlier intercomparison exercises.« less
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  1. Utrecht Univ., Utrecht (The Netherlands). Inst. for Marine and Atmospheric Research (IMAU); Univ. Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels (Belgium). Lab. de Glaciologie
  2. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States)
  3. Open Univ., Milton Keynes (United Kingdom). School of Environment, Earth & Ecosystem Sciences
  4. Univ. of Tokyo (Japan). Atmosphere Ocean Research Inst.
  5. Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (United States). Geophysical Inst.
  6. Potsdam Inst. for Climate Impact Research, Potsdam (Germany)
  7. Univ. Grenoble Alpes, Grenoble (France)
  8. Victoria Univ. of Wellington (New Zealand). Antarctic Research Centre
  9. Univ. of Reading, Reading (United Kingdom). Dept. of Meteorology; Met Office Hadley Centre, Exeter (United Kingdom)
  10. Hokkaido Univ., Sapporo (Japan). Inst. of Low Temperature Science
  11. Alfred Wegener Inst. for Polar and Marine Research, Bremerhaven (Germany); Univ. of Bremen (Germany)
  12. Vrije Univ., Brussel (Belgium)
  13. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Climate Change Science Inst.; Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Computational Sciences and Engineering Division
  14. California Inst. of Technology (CalTech), Pasadena, CA (United States). Jet Propulsion Lab.
  15. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO (United States)
  16. Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, Gif-sur-Yvette (France)
  17. Univ. of Bristol, Bristol (United Kingdom)
  18. Univ. of California, Irvine, CA (United States)
  19. Univ. Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels (Belgium). Lab. de Glaciologie
  20. Danish Meteorological Inst., Copenhagen (Denmark); Alfred Wegener Inst. for Polar and Marine Research, Bremerhaven (Germany)
  21. Alfred Wegener Inst. for Polar and Marine Research, Bremerhaven (Germany)
  22. Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, Yokohama (Japan)
  23. Univ. of Leeds, Leeds (United Kingdom). School of Earth and Environment
  24. Utrecht Univ., Utrecht (The Netherlands). Inst. for Marine and Atmospheric Research (IMAU)
  25. Max Planck Inst. for Meteorology, Hamburg (Germany)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
AC05-00OR22725; 610055; 57001; CPER07_13 CIRA; 2016-016066; 17H06104; 16H02224; 7K05664
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Cryosphere (Online)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: The Cryosphere (Online); Journal Volume: 12; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 1994-0424
European Geosciences Union
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23); National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA); National Science Foundation (NSF)
Country of Publication:
United States
OSTI Identifier: