End to End Modeling with Dan Welling

Written by Alexa Halford

Most scientists work on multiple projects at a time. CUSIA Team members are no exception. But these other projects often either enable new research on other projects or are enabled and improved by others. This is the case for end to end modeling and forecasting of space weather. Forecasting the weather is always difficult. Back in the mid – late 20th century terrestrial weather forecasts greatly improved with improvements in computers and modeling as well as a large increase in data. Space weather has some amazing models, but still has a relatively small number of data points – space is big… like really big. But these challenges haven’t stopped Dan and others from working on producing and improving space weather forecasts which start at the Sun and ultimately impact us here on Earth. What to learn more about this research? Watch Dan’s Magnetosphere Seminar on this work here.

Now what would this have to do with CUSIA you ask? CUSIA is looking at how asymmetries in geospace, the region of space around the Earth, affect space weather phenomena, and our model results. So CUSIA helps inform this work on multiple fronts. First off it helps to identify what asymmetries are most impactful – which ones cause space weather that impacts us here on Earth and which asymmetries mess up our predictions of what happens here on Earth. For example, when there is a solar storm, if it hits our magnetosphere a little off center, this can affect how large and where we see the biggest induced currents on the ground… why do we care about induced currents? Check out some of the previous work from some CUSIA team members reported here in the conversation.

CUSIA also helps end to end modeling and forecasting by improving the models. As we include more and more of the physics of asymmetries into our models, are models become more realistic. With each new improvement we are able to better understand the Earth space system as a whole, and thus make better forecasts.

While the goal of CUSIA isn’t to produce end to end, or as I like to call it, Sun to mud space weather forecasts, the work we do here will continue to impact and improve this research area.

Before you leave – Think we’ve missed an asymmetry that could help improve end to end modeling and forecasting? Check out and contribute to the CAM and become a force multiplier!

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