Press Release

NASA Free Global Climate Model Available to Classrooms

By SpaceRef Editor
January 11, 2005
Filed under , ,
NASA Free Global Climate Model Available to Classrooms
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A free NASA global climate model is available for high school and university
desktop computers.

The Educational Global Climate Model (EdGCM), available for both Windows and Mac
platforms, incorporates a 3-D climate model developed at NASA’s Goddard Institute
for Space Studies (GISS), New York. It wraps complex computer modeling programs
with a graphical interface familiar to most PC users.

The climate model runs on a desktop computer to allow teachers and students to
conduct experiments identical to those scientists run on supercomputers to
simulate past and future climate changes. EdGCM links the climate model to both a
database and scientific visualization utilities, making it simpler to create and
organize data and images.

“The real goal of EdGCM is to allow teachers and students to learn more about
climate science by participating in the full scientific process, including
experiment design, running model simulations, analyzing data, and reporting on
results via the Web,” said Mark Chandler, lead researcher for the EdGCM project
from Columbia University, New York.

An EdGCM Cooperative is being designed to encourage communication among students
at different schools and among schools and research institutions. The cooperative
will help students become familiar with the importance of teamwork in scientific
research.

EdGCM educational materials are also in development. A curriculum module will
walk students through a complete scientific project involving the Global Climate
Model (GCM) and climate change analysis. Additional lesson plans will elaborate
on how students can use a climate model to study topics such as ancient climates
in geologic history or future climate water cycles. NASA is contributing funding
to improve cross-platform compatibility and to create detailed manuals to help
guide teachers through the many uses of EdGCM.

Professors at three N.Y. area universities are already using EdGCM. Professors
and students at Columbia University, City University of New York, and New York
University can conduct research projects using the NASA/GISS GCM. At least two
high schools in Madison, Wis. are also testing EdGCM this semester in Earth
Science courses.

For more information about the EdGCM, visit:

http://www.edgcm.org

To download EdGCM software from the Internet, visit:

http://www.edgcm.org/EdGCMCooperative/Downloads.php

For more information about climate study in the classroom, please visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/everydaylife/climate_class.html

For information about NASA and agency programs on the Internet, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov

SpaceRef staff editor.