From csdms

The joint 2016 CSDMS - SEN* Annual Meeting
Capturing Climate Change

May 17 -19th 2016, Boulder Colorado, USA

Optional: May 16th 2016, pre-conference bootcamp


Registration is now closed.

Objectives and general description

The joint CSDMS - SEN* 2016 annual meeting will focus on “advances in simulating the imprint of climate change on the land and seascapes, including the processes that influence them”. We would like presentations to either focus on the impacts of present and future climate change, or how climate change has impacted the earth in the past. Topics of interests also include modeling research that integrate different disciplines, different scales, and the synergy between models and experimental data. As in past meetings, keynote speakers are by invitation only, and poster presentations are the general media. The meeting will include:

  1. State-of-the art keynote presentations in earth-surface dynamics and modeling
  2. Hands-on clinics related to community models, tools and approaches
  3. Transformative software products and approaches designed to be accessible, easy to use, and relevant
  4. Breakout sessions for Working, Focus Research Groups and the Initiatives
  5. Poster Sessions

and more!

Poster Information: The poster boards are configured for 4' wide by 6' tall (portrait orientation) posters. The deadline to submit abstracts is April 1, 2016.


Click here to view the draft agenda of 04/05/2016.

Keynote Speakers

As of now:

Jean Braun
Institut des Sciences de la Terre, Universitaire de Grenoble
Links Between Mantle Convection, Tectonics, Erosion and Climate: Recent Model Developments and Results
Plate tectonics is the primary process controlling the Earth’s surface topography. In recent years, geodynamicists have emphasised the role that deep mantle flow may play in directly creating long wavelength, low amplitude topography (a so-called “dynamic” contribution to surface topography). In parallel, geomorphologists have investigated how surface processes (erosion, transport and sedimentation) may affect dynamic topography, with the aim of better understanding its signature in the geological record. To achieve this, we have developed a new class of surface processes models that represent the combined effects of physical erosion and chemical alteration within continental interiors. In developing these models, we have paid much attention to maintaining high efficiency and stability such that they could be used to model large continental areas with sufficient spatial resolution to represent the processes at the appropriate scale. I will briefly present these algorithms as well as the results of two separate studies in which we explain the anomalously rapid erosion of surface material during the passage of a continent over a fixed source of dynamic topography driven by upward flow in the mantle. I will also comment on how these models are strongly dependent on precipitation patterns and, ultimately, will need to be fully coupled to climate models to provide more meaningful constraints on the past evolution of surface topography.
Enrique Curchitser
Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University
Regional and Global Ramifications of Boundary Current Upwelling
We present results from a climate model integration with a multi-scale ocean component capable of locally enhancing resolution. The model is the NCAR Community Earth System Model (CESM), in which the ocean component contains a high-resolution ROMS nest for either the California Current System or the Benguela Current. In this presentation we will show results from century-long integrations showing that the better representation of coastal upwelling has both regional and global ramifications to the climate system. Using a comparative analysis of the two upwelling systems, we will show that enhancing the climate model representation of boundary currents is not simply a matter of enhanced resolution. Finally, we will use our multi-scale setup to distinguish between the role of atmospheric tele-connections and oceanic advection in propagating the upwelling signal.
Mark Rounsevell
University of Edinburgh
Integrative assessment modeling
Wonsuck Kim
University of Texas
Overcoming Grand Challenges by Collaboration between Experimentalists and Modelers
Wonsuck Kim, University of Texas, Austin
Brandon McElroy, University of Wyoming, Laramie
Kimberly Miller, University of Wyoming, Laramie
Raleigh Martin, University of California, Los Angeles
Leslie Hsu, USGS

Research in Earth-surface processes and subsurface stratal development is in a data-rich era with rapid expansion of facilities that produce tremendous digital data with time and space resolution far beyond what we can collect in the field. Despite these advances, sediment experimentalists are an example community in the “long tail”, meaning that their data are often collected in one-of-a-kind experimental set-ups and isolated from other experiments. Experimentalists also have a lot of “dark data” that are difficult or impossible to access through the Internet. The Sediment Experimentalist Network (SEN) was formed to address these challenges. Over the last three years, SEN launched a Knowledge Base website, held international workshops, and provided educational short courses. Through workshops and short courses, SEN has identified and shared experimental data best practices, developed metadata standards for data collection, and fostered data management and sharing efforts within the experimentalist community. Now is the time to extend this collaboration toward Earth-surface modelers to advance geoscience research and education. We identified three grand challenges for SEN: (1) How best to relate experiments to natural systems and theory, (2) How to ensure comparability of experimental results from disparate facilities, and (3) How to distinguish external versus intrinsic processes observed in experiments. Experimentalist-modeler collaborations are essential for achieving solutions to all of these grand challenges. Theoretical and numerical modeling based on first principles can help to extrapolate insight from experiments to field scales, to compare results from different lab facilities, and to decouple autogenic processes and allogenic forcings in geomorphology and stratigraphy. The experimentalist-modeler collaborative effort will result in tremendous opportunities for overcoming grand challenges in our communities.
Jean-Francois Lamarque
National Center for Atmospheric Research
Modeling the Couplings Across the Earth Surface in CESM
The Community Earth System Model (CESM) is a comprehensive global Earth System model. As such, it requires the representation of many coupling across the various components (land, ice, ocean, atmosphere). In this talk, I will most focus on the current and upcoming representations of the physical and chemical couplings across the Earth surface in CESM.
Nikki Lovenduski
Department of Atmospheric and Ocean Sciences and Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research, University of Colorado, Boulder
Ocean Carbon Uptake and Acidification: Can We Predict the Future?
The oceans have absorbed a large fraction of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions, having consequences for ocean biogeochemistry and ecosystems via ocean acidification. Simulations with Earth System Models can be used to predict the future evolution of ocean carbon uptake and acidification in the coming decades and beyond, but there is substantial uncertainty in these model predictions, particularly on regional scales. Such uncertainty challenges decision makers faced with protecting the future health of ocean ecosystems. Uncertainty can be separated into three component parts: (1) uncertainty due to internal variability, (2) uncertainty due to model structure, and (3) uncertainty due to emission scenario. Here, we isolate and quantify the evolution of these three sources of prediction uncertainty in ocean carbon uptake over the next century using output from two sets of ensembles from the Community Earth System Model (CESM) along with output from models participating in the Fifth Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). We find that the three sources of prediction uncertainty in ocean carbon uptake are not constant, but instead vary with prediction lead time and the scale of spatial averaging. In order to provide valuable predictions to decision makers, we should invest in reducing the main sources of uncertainty.
Bette Otto-Bliesner
Climate Dynamics of Tropical Africa: Paleoclimate perspectives and challenges
Water – too little, too much – will likely be the biggest future climate challenge for the world. This will be particularly true in vulnerable regions in Africa, where the response of rainfall to increasing greenhouse gas concentrations is a critical socio-economic issue, with implications for water resources, agriculture, and potential conflict. The geological record finds tropical Africa at times hyperarid and at other times covered with large megalakes, with abrupt transitions between these humid and dry states. Climate modeling allows us to explore the processes that combined to produce these past changes. In this talk, I will highlight what has been learned about the glacial-interglacial variations of African hydroclimate from models and data. Together, they provide a perspective on projections of future precipitation changes over tropical Africa.
Jon Pelletier
University of Arizona
Modeling the Impact of Vegetation Changes on Erosion Rates and Landscape Evolution
In landscape evolution models, climate change is often assumed to be synonymous with changes in rainfall. In many climate changes, however, the dominant driver of landscape evolution is changes in vegetation cover. In this talk I review case studies that attempt to quantify the impact of vegetation changes on landscape evolution, including examples from hillslope/colluvial, fluvial, and aolian environments, spatial scales of ~10 m to whole continents, and time scales from decadal to millennial. Particular attention is paid to how to parameterize models using paleoclimatic and remote sensing data.
Zach Tessler
Environmental CrossRoads Initiative, CUNY Advanced Science Research Center
From Relative Sea Level Rise to Coastal Risk: Estimating Contemporary and Future Flood Risk in Deltas
Deltas are highly sensitive to local human activities, land subsidence, regional water management, global sea-level rise, and climate extremes. In this talk, I’ll discuss a recently developed risk framework for estimating the sensitivity of deltas to relative sea level rise, and the expected impact on flood risk. We apply this framework to an integrated set of global environmental, geophysical, and social indicators over 48 major deltas to quantify how delta flood risk due to extreme events is changing over time. Although geophysical and relative sea-level rise derived risks are distributed across all levels of economic development, wealthy countries effectively limit their present-day threat by gross domestic product–enabled infrastructure and coastal defense investments. However, when investments do not address the long-term drivers of land subsidence and relative sea-level rise, overall risk can be very sensitive to changes in protective capability. For instance, we show how in an energy-constrained future scenario, such protections will probably prove to be unsustainable, raising relative risks by four to eight times in the Mississippi and Rhine deltas and by one-and-a-half to four times in the Chao Phraya and Yangtze deltas. This suggests that the current emphasis on short-term solutions on the world’s deltas will greatly constrain options for designing sustainable solutions in the long term.
Don Deangelis
Ecological Applications of Agent Based Models
The last two decades have been a period of enormous growth of agent-based (or individual-based) (ABM) modeling in ecology. ABMs allow mechanistic detail to be represented for many aspects of variation of individual organisms. ABMs are suited to spatially explicit modeling of populations, communities, and ecosystems, taking into account both the complexity of the environment and the physiological and behavioral adaptations of organisms. Thus, ABMs can include links between effects of environmental factors on plants and animals and makes ABMs essential in projecting how climate change will affect ecological systems. Key studies using ABMs to both understand ecological systems and project future changes will be discussed. These ecological applications include forest dynamics, species conservation, and preservation of biodiversity. This will include a prognosis of the future directions.
Anders Damsgaard
Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD
Grain-Scale Numerical Modeling of Granular Mechanics and Fluid Dynamics and Application in a Glacial Context
The macroscopic behavior of granular materials is the result of the self-organizing complexity of the constituent grains. Granular materials are known for their ability to change phase, where each phase is characterized by distinct mechanical properties. This rich generic phenomenology has made it difficult to constrain generalized and adequate mathematical models for their mechanical behavior. Glaciers and ice streams often move by deformation of underlying melt-water saturated sediments. Glacier flow models including subglacial sediment deformation use simplified a priori assumptions for sediment rheology, which limit our ability to predict ice sheet dynamics in a changing climate.

In this talk I will present the soft-body Discrete Element Method which is a Lagrangian method I use in order to simulate the unique and diverse nature of granular dynamics in the subglacial environment. However, the method imposes intense computational requirements on the computational time step. The majority of steps in the granular dynamics algorithm are massively parallel, which makes the DEM an obvious candidate for exploiting the capabilities of modern GPUs. The granular computations are coupled to a fluid-dynamics solver in order to include grain-fluid feedbacks, which prove to be important for stick-slip behavior of glaciers.

All code is open source and freely licensed.
Zhen Cheng
Center for Applied Coastal Research, University of Delaware
A Turbulence-Resolving Eulerian Two-Phase Model for Sediment Transport Applications
Coastal morphological evolution is caused by a wide range of coupled cross-shore and alongshore sediment transport processes associated with short waves, infragravity waves, and wave-induced currents. However, the fundamental transport mechanisms occur within the thin bottom boundary layer and are dictated by turbulence-sediment interaction and inter-granular interactions. In the past decade, significant progresses have been made in modeling sediment transport using Eulerian-Eulerian or Eulerian-Lagrangian two-phase flow approach. However, most of these models are limited to one-dimensional-vertical (1DV) formulation, which is only applicable to Reynolds-averaged sheet flow condition. Consequently, complex processes such as instabilities of the transport layer, bedform dynamics and turbulence-resolving capability cannot be simulated. The main objective of my research study was to develop a multi-dimensional four-way coupled two-phase model for sediment transport that can be used for Reynolds-averaged modeling for large-scale applications or for turbulence-resolving simulations at small-scale.
Jordan Adams
Tulane University
Integrating a 2-D Hydrodynamic Model into the Landlab Modeling Framework
Landscape evolution models often generalize hydrology by assuming steady-state discharge to calculate channel incision. While this assumption is reasonable for smaller watersheds or larger precipitation events, non-steady hydrology is a more applicable condition for semi-arid landscapes, which are prone to short-duration, high-intensity storms. In these cases, the impact of a hydrograph (non-steady method) may be significant in determining long-term drainage basin evolution. This project links a two-dimensional hydrodynamic algorithm with a detachment-limited incision component in the Landlab modeling framework. Storms of varying intensity and duration are run across two synthetic landscapes, and incision rate is calculated throughout the hydrograph. For each case, peak discharge and total incision are compared to the values predicted by steady-state to evaluate the impact of the two hydrologic methods. We explore the impact of different critical shear stress values on total incision using the different flow methods. Finally, a watershed will be evolved to topographic steady-state using both the steady- and non-steady flow routing methods to identify differences in overall relief and drainage network configuration. Preliminary testing with no critical shear stress threshold has shown that although non-steady peak discharge is smaller than the peak predicted by the steady-state method, total incised depth from non-steady methods exceeds the steady-state derived incision depth in all storm cases. With the introduction of a incision threshold, we predict there will be cases where the steady-state method overestimates total incised depth compared to the non-steady method. Additionally, we hypothesize that watersheds evolved with the non-steady method will be characterized by decreased channel concavities. This work demonstrates that when modeling landscapes characterized by semi-arid climates, choice of hydrology method can significantly impact the resulting morphology.

Clinic Leaders

Tuesday (1st day)

Irina Overeem & Mark Piper
CSDMS Integration Facility, INSTAAR, University of Colorado Boulder
People attending: 41
Using TopoFlow in the classroom
TopoFlow is a spatially distributed hydrologic model that includes meteorology, snow melt, evapotranspiration, infiltration and flow routing components. It can model many different physical processes in a watershed with the goal of accurately predicting how various hydrologic variables will evolve in time in response to climatic forcings. In the past year, CSDMS IF staff integrated TopoFlow into the CSDMS Web Modeling Tool (WMT, and developed new lesson plans for use with it.

The first part of this clinic focuses on the technical aspects of working with TopoFlow in WMT, including how to: load and couple components, get information on a component, set parameters, upload data files, save a model, and run a model. We’ll discuss features of the TopoFlow implementation in WMT, and explain choices that were made in bringing TopoFlow to the web.

In the second part of the clinic, we’ll focus on science and education. We will run several TopoFlow simulations on the CSDMS HPCC through WMT. Participants will explore parameter settings, submit runs, and view netCDF output using NASA’s Panoply tool.

The learning outcomes of this clinic are to have better insight into the behavior of TopoFlow components, and the implementation of these in WMT. Participants will learn how to do TopoFlow model runs, and will have access to TopoFlow online labs and teaching resources lesson plans.
Ehab Mesehle & Eric White
The Water Institute of the Gulf
People attending: 28
Coastal Ecosystem Integrated Compartment Model (ICM): Modeling Framework
The Integrated Compartment Model (ICM) was developed as part of the 2017 Coastal Master Plan modeling effort. It is a comprehensive and numerical hydrodynamic model coupled to various geophysical process models. Simplifying assumptions related to some of the flow dynamics are applied to increase the computational efficiency of the model. The model can be used to provide insights about coastal ecosystems and evaluate restoration strategies. It builds on existing tools where possible and incorporates newly developed tools where necessary. It can perform decadal simulations (~ 50 years) across the entire Louisiana coast. It includes several improvements over the approach used to support the 2012 Master Plan, such as: additional processes in the hydrology, vegetation, wetland and barrier island morphology subroutines, increased spatial resolution, and integration of previously disparate models into a single modeling framework. The ICM includes habitat suitability indices (HSIs) to predict broad spatial patterns of habitat change, and it provides an additional integration to a dynamic fish and shellfish community model which quantitatively predicts potential changes in important fishery resources. It can be used to estimate the individual and cumulative effects of restoration and protection projects on the landscape, including a general estimate of water levels associated with flooding. The ICM is also used to examine possible impacts of climate change and future environmental scenarios (e.g. precipitation, Eustatic sea level rise, subsidence, tropical storms, etc.) on the landscape and on the effectiveness of restoration projects. The ICM code is publically accessible, and coastal restoration and protection groups interested in planning-level modeling are encouraged to explore its utility as a computationally efficient tool to examine ecosystem response to future physical or ecological changes, including the implementation of restoration and protection strategies.
Mary Hill
University of Kansas
People attending: 11
MODFLOW: Example applications and what we can learn from this amazingly successful piece of environmental modeling software.
Scott Peckham & Allen Pope,
Univ of CO & USC, ISI
People attending: 42
Geoscience Paper of the Future: Training Session on Best Practices for Publishing Your Research Products
The Geoscience Paper of the Future (GPF) Initiative was created to encourage geoscientists to publish papers together with their associated digital research products following best practices of reproducible articles, open science, and digital scholarship. A GPF includes: 1) Data available in a public repository, including metadata, a license specifying conditions of use, and a citation using a unique and persistent identifier; 2) Software available in a public repository, with documentation, a license for reuse, and a unique and citable using a persistent identifier; 3) Provenance of the results by explicitly describing method steps and their outcome in a workflow sketch, a formal workflow, or a provenance record. Learn to write a GPF and submit to a special section of AGU’s Earth and Space Sciences Journal. More at

Wednesday (2nd day)

Wonsuck Kim, Brandon McElroy, Kimberly Miller, Raleigh Martin & Leslie Hsu
The Univ. of TX, Univ. of WY, Univ. of WY, Univ. of CA, USGS
People attending: 60
SEN: Take only measurements. Leave only data
Wonsuck Kim, University of Texas, Austin
Brandon McElroy, University of Wyoming, Laramie
Kimberly Miller, University of Wyoming, Laramie
Raleigh Martin, University of California, Los Angeles
Leslie Hsu, USGS

The Sediment Experimentalist Network (SEN) integrates the efforts of sediment experimentalists to build a Knowledge Base for guidance on best practices for data collection and management. The network facilitates cross-institutional collaborative experiments and communicates with the research community about data and metadata guidelines for sediment-based experiments. This effort aims to improve the efficiency and transparency of sedimentary research for field geologists and modelers as well as experimentalists.

The first part of this clinic will include a hand-on experiment using a desktop flume. We will create a physical model of a delta in a small flume on-site during the meeting. Fitting with the annual meeting theme, we will explore how delta morphology and stratigraphy capture climate change. The major goals will be to discuss the lifecycle of data and data management for experiments and to generate an example dataset for numerical model testing. Discussion will include practical aspects such as metadata requirements and naming variables.

In the second part, participants will learn how to engage in the SEN Knowledge Base and create an entry either using the collected data from the clinic experiment or participants’ own research data. We will focus our data usage and entry activities around the science theme of our experiments and associated model efforts: How do delta morphology and stratigraphy respond to external perturbations generated by climate change? We will explore to discover data from the experimentalist community, workflows, laboratory facilities and their capabilities for potential collaborations. This second part will also include discussion about a best practice for data preservation and reuse through the current infrastructure (e.g., SEN, SEAD, institutional data repositories). After getting to know the Knowledge Base and other cyberinfrastructure, we will discuss the possibility of experimentalist-modeler collaborations to address our science theme and achieve solutions to grand challenge goals.

Enrollees will be contacted a couple weeks prior to the CSDMS meeting to engage in some brief pre-workshop activities to prepare for the clinic. There will be a short survey at the end about how to enhance collaborations between modeler and experimentalist communities.

More about SEN:
Eric Hutton & Mark Piper
CSDMS Integration Facility, INSTAAR, University of Colorado Boulder
People attending: 15
BMI: Live!
CSDMS has developed the Basic Model Interface (BMI) to simplify the conversion of an existing model in C, C++, Fortran, Java, or Python into a reusable, plug-and-play component. By design, the BMI functions are straightforward to implement. However, in practice, the devil is in the details.

In this hands-on clinic, we will take a model -- in this case, an implementation of the two-dimensional heat equation in Python -- and together, we will write the BMI functions to transform it into a component. As we develop, we’ll unit test our component with nose, and we’ll explore how to use the component with a Jupyter Notebook. Optionally, we can set up a GitHub repository to store and to track changes to the code we write.

To get the most out of this clinic, come prepared to code! We have a lot to write in the time allotted. We recommend that clinic attendees have a laptop with the Anaconda Python distribution installed. We also request that you skim:

⤅ BMI description (
⤅ BMI documentation (

before participating in the clinic.
Courtney Harris, Julia Moriarty & Irina Overeem and Eric Hutton
VIMS & Univ. of Colorado
People attending: 15
Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS): An introductory web-based model implementation
Participants in this clinic will learn how to run a Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS) test case for an idealized continental shelf model domain within the CSDMS Web Modeling Toolkit (WMT). The model implementation that we will use includes wave forcing, a riverine source, suspended sediment transport.

ROMS is an open source, three-dimensional primitive equation hydrodynamic ocean model that uses a structured curvilinear horizontal grid and a stretched terrain following vertical grid. For more information see It currently has more than 4,000 registered users, and the full model includes modules for sediment transport and biogeochemistry, and several options for turbulence closures and numerical schemes. In part because ROMS was designed to provide flexibility for the choice of model parameterizations and processes, and to run in parallel, implementing the code can seem daunting, but in this clinic, we will present an idealized ROMS model that can be run on the CSDMS cluster via the WMT. One goal is to provide a relatively easy introduction to the numerical modeling process that can be used within upper level undergraduate and graduate classes to explore sediment transport on continental shelves.

As a group, we will run an idealized ROMS model on the CSDMS computer, Beach. The group will choose a modification to the standard model. While the modified model runs, we will explore methods for visualizing model output. Participants who have access to WMT can run the model themselves. Clinic participants who have access to Matlab and/or Panoply will be able to browse model output files during the clinic.

Following the clinic, participants should have access to an example ROMS model run, experience running ROMS within the WMT and with ROMS input and output files, and. ROMS lesson plans.
Zheyu Zhou, Xiaofeng Liu & Tom Hsu
Univ. Delaware, Penn State, Univ. Delaware,
People attending: 27
Modeling coastal processes using OpenFOAM
OpenFoamÒ is an open-source computational fluid dynamic platform, built upon a finite-volume framework with Messaging Passing Interface (MPI). In the past decade, OpenFoamÒ has become increasingly popular among researchers who are interested in fluvial and coastal processes. In this clinic, recent progress in developing OpenFoamÒ for several coastal applications will be discussed. In particular, we will focus on three subjects: (1) wave-induced seabed dynamics (pore-pressure response), (2) stratified flow application, particularly laboratory scale river plume modeling, and (3) 3D large-eddy simulation of wave-breaking and suspended sediment transport processes.
In particular, hand-on exercise will be given for 3D large-eddy simulation of wave-breaking processes to illustrate several important insights on how to use OpenFoamÒ to carry out high quality large-eddy simulations. Some cautionary notes and limitations will also be discussed.

Thursday (3rd day)

Gregory E. Tucker (1), Daniel E.J. Hobley (1), Sai S. Nudurupati (2), Jordan M. Adams (3), Eric Hutton (4), Nicole M. Gasparini (3), and Erkan Istanbulluoglu (2)
(1) CIRES and Dep. of Geological Sciences, Univ. of Colorado
(2) Dep. of Civil and Env. Engineering, Univ. of Washington
(3) Dep. of Earth and Env. Sciences, Tulane Univ.
(4) CSDMS, Univ. of Colorado

People attending: 74
Modeling Earth-Surface Dynamics with LandLab
Landlab is a Python-language programming library that supports efficient creation of two-dimensional (2D) models of diverse earth-surface systems. For those new to Landlab, this clinic will provide a hands-on introduction to Landlab's features and capabilities, including how to create a grid, populate it with data, and run basic numerical algorithms. For experienced Landlab users, we will review some of the new features in this first full-release version, explore how to created integrated models by combining pre-built process components, and learn the basics of writing new components. Participants are encouraged to install Landlab on their computers prior to the clinic. Installation instructions can be found at: (select "Install" from the menu bar at the top of the page). Clinic participants who have particular questions or applications in mind are encouraged to email the conveners ahead of the CSDMS meeting so that we can plan topics and exercises accordingly.
Monte Lunacek
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
People attending: 24
Interactive Data Analysis with Python (PANDAS)
There are many recent additions to Python that make it an excellent programming language for data analysis. This tutorial has two goals. First, we introduce several of the recent Python modules for data analysis. We provide hands-on exercises for manipulating and analyzing data using pandas and scikit-learn. Second, we execute examples using the Jupyter notebook, a web-based interactive development environment that facilitates documentation, sharing, and remote execution. Together these tools create a powerful, new way to approach scientific workflows for data analysis.
Wei Luo
Northern Illinois University
People attending: 2
WILSIM as EKT tool
The Web-based Interactive Landform Simulation Model – Grand Canyon (WILSIM-GC) is a physically-based landscape evolution model. It is implemented as a Java applet, taking advantage of Java OpenGL library and with separate threads for model computation, visualization, and user interface.

WILSIM-GC has been developed with the idea that computer simulations can provide students with the opportunity to observe, interact with, and explore earth surface processes. This learning by doing approach can enhance students’ understanding of long term processes, in this case river incision, by changing key model input parameters and observe the effects on the virtual landscape.

This clinic will start with a brief description of the physically-based model by Prof. Jon Pelletier and a short presentation on the classroom testing result of how WILSIM-GC enhanced student learning by Prof. Wei Luo. Participants will use the rest of time work on several modules designed to explore different scenarios of the model ( If time permits, participants will design their own scenarios that suit their classroom needs.

Please bring your own laptop (required) and browse the project website ahead of time (optional).
Randy LeVeque
University of Washington, Seattle
People attending: 24
GeoClaw Software for Depth Average Flow
GeoClaw ( is an open-source software package for solving two-dimensional depth-averaged equations over general topography using high-resolution finite volume methods and adaptive mesh refinement. Wetting-and-drying algorithms allow modeling inundation or overland flows. The primary applications where GeoClaw has been used are tsunami modeling and storm surge, although it has also been applied to dam break floods and it forms the basis for the debris flow and landslide code D-Claw under development at the USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory.

This tutorial will give an introduction to setting up a tsunami modeling problem in GeoClaw including:
⤅ Overview of capabilities,
⤅ Installing the software,
⤅ Using Python tools provided in GeoClaw to acquire and work with topography datasets and earthquake source models,
⤅ Setting run-time parameters, including specifying adaptive refinement regions,
⤅ Options to output snapshots of the solution or maximum flow depths, arrival times, etc.
⤅ The VisClaw plotting software to visualize results using Python tools or display on Google Earth.

GeoClaw is distributed as part of Clawpack (, and available via the CSDMS model repository. Those who wish to install the software in advance on laptops, please see


Interested to see who registered for the meeting as of 12/05/2016?


4878178960 fe558ee9b0 o TEDxBoulder.jpg

Within its budget, CSDMS intends to support member applicants to attend the annual meeting. Towards this goal, we encourage members to fully or partially cover their expenses if capable. We additionally thank those in the industry and agency fields for understanding that 1) we cannot compensate federal agency participants since our own funding is from NSF, and 2) we request that our industrial/ corporate participants cover their own costs thereby allowing more academic participants to attend.

To the extent possible, CSDMS intends to reimburse the registration fee, lodging (shared rooms at 100% and single rooms at 50% at conference hotels), and a limited amount of travel expenses for qualified registrants - those members who will attend all three days of the meeting and are not industry or federal employees.

Important for foreign travelers requesting reimbursement: If you need a visa to travel to USA, select a business visa. If you need an invitation letter, please email as soon as possible. Also indicate whether specific wording is required in the letter. Second, we will need to copy the entry stamp in your passport sometime during the meeting as proof that you were here on business as required by US tax laws for reimbursement (especially when dealing with airfare.) We are only able to provide reimbursement for airfare within the U.S. All airfare that is being reimbursed must be for airlines that are U.S. flag carriers.

Travel, Lodging and Conference Center Information

The meeting will be held at SEEC
Hotel: Millennium Harvest House Hotel
Transportation: You can book transportation between DIA and Boulder here: Green Ride Boulder. And information on how to find Green Ride Boulder at DIA.
We will provide a bus between the hotels and the meeting venue each day. We will also provide transportation to the banquet.

Pre-conference one-day Software Carpentry bootcamp

CSDMS will host a Pre-conference one-day Software Carpentry bootcamp on Monday May 16th, 2016. The objective is to teach basic programming skills that will be useful for scientific computing and model development. This is an intensive, hands-on workshop, during which certified instructors will cover basic elements of:
  1. the Unix bash shell,
  2. Python programming and NumPy, and
  3. Github for version control.

Our instructors are earth scientists and have familiarity with the CSDMS framework, such that lessons and examples will be targeted toward relevant problems in your field. The bootcamp intentionally precedes the CSDMS meeting, so the skills participants develop should be useful in the clinics during the meeting.


  • Registration is open till April 1st (or until program fill) and is handled through the 2016 meeting site.
  • The bootcamp is capped at 30 participants (first paid first serve), and it has a $30 registration fee.
  • Participant will be responsible for cost / organization of their extra day of hotel accommodation and dinner. Costs will not be reimbursed.
  • We will cover coffee and lunch during the bootcamp.

Student Scholarships (two options)


The CSDMS scholarship is now closed.


The Sediment Experimentalist Network (SEN) is sponsoring a data-utilization contest for graduate-student and early-career geoscience modelers who feel passionate about advancing science through experimental data sharing and reuse. The top four winners of the data-utilization contest will have all travel and registration costs paid for.
To apply:
  • Please check the box during registration to indicate that you are applying for the SEN travel grant.
  • Send your application materials (proposal, professional biography) to by April 1, 2016.
  • Full instructions for the travel grant application are available here.

Important dates

  • January 15th: Registration opens
  • March 1st: Deadline for student scholarship applications CSDMS
  • April 1st: Deadline for student scholarship applications SEN
  • April 1st: Deadline for abstract submission & early registration
  • May 16th: Optional: pre-conference bootcamp
  • May 17-19th: CSDMS annual meeting
  • May 20th: CSDMS Executive and Steering committees meeting (by invitation only)
CSDMS high res weblogo.jpgSEN-logo.jpeg

* The Sediment Experimentalist Network (SEN) integrates the efforts of sediment experimentalists to build a knowledge base for guidance on best practices for data collection and management. The network facilitates cross-institutional collaborative experiments and communicates with the research community about data and metadata guidelines for sediment-based experiments. This effort aims to improve the efficiency and transparency of sedimentary research for field geologists and modelers as well as experimentalists.

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