Models in Research Department 1

Modelling Strategy of RD1

Maintenance and development of RD1’s models have been central to RD1’s ability to deliver science. Four major strands of modelling can be distinguished:

POEM nur 3D


Developing a next-generation comprehensive Earth system model (Potsdam Earth Model POEM, phase 1) while continuing operations of its precursor model (CLIMBER-3α).


Developing a new Earth system model of intermediate complexity CLIMBER-X for time scales up to hundreds of millennia, which will replace the earlier CLIMBER-2 model.

Each grid cell in LPJmL simulations can consist of indivudual land use types or a mosaic of variable fractions of different agricultural lands and natural vegetation.


The LPJmL model is a key component model employed for POEM as well as a stand-alone application. It has been developed from LPJ, a Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (DGVM), which was designed to simulate the global terrestrial carbon cycle and the response of carbon and vegetation patterns under climate change. 

image showing a map of Antarctica


Processes like ice shelf calving and stress boundary conditions are important parts of marine ice sheet models, and sea level projections, due to their effect on the dynamics upstream of the grounding line. Developers at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Germany, introduced modifications of PISM ice shelf and grounding-line dynamics with a special focus on modeling the Antarctic ice sheet-shelf system. The ice dynamics model PISM-PIK is a key component of POEM.

copan:CORE World-Earth modelling framework paper published


Eventually integrating selected (often highly non-linear) effects of social macro-dynamics (e.g. of preference dynamics) into Earth’s biogeochemical cycles (copan:CORE model, in collaboration with RD4 and the GaNe FutureLab).