The American multinational NVIDIA, specialized in developing graphic processing units and integrated circuit technologies, has revealed its plans to create a computer simulation of the Earth in order to forecast future climate changes and adapt infrastructures and humanity to them.
Christened Earth-2 (Earth-2), the system will create a digital twin of the planet in Omniverse, NVIDIA’s platform that enables global 3D design teams to work with multiple software packages to collaborate in real time in a shared virtual space.
“The answer is simulation”
At blog company official, the general director of the technology, Jensen Huang, warned that global warming is already translating into a multiplication of extreme weather conditions, such as “historic droughts, unprecedented heat waves, intense hurricanes, violent storms and catastrophic floods.”
“We need to face climate change now,” he said, assuring that to achieve this goal, “the answer is simulation.”
The NVIDIA chief points out that humanity needs “climate models that predict the climate in various parts of the globe over decades” to “develop the best strategies for mitigation and adaptation“, recognizing that” the results of these efforts will not be felt for decades. “
“Unlike weather forecasts, which mainly model atmospheric physics, climate models are simulations for several decades henceforth they model the physics, chemistry and biology of the atmosphere, water, ice, land and human activities “, he explains.
Expand the resolution scales
The current simulations, according to Huang, are not enough, since they cover resolutions of between 10 and 100 kilometers, while a higher resolution is needed to model the changes of the global water cycle, which records the movement of ocean water, sea ice, land surface, underground layers, atmosphere, and clouds.
“A resolution at a scale of one meter is necessary to simulate clouds that reflect sunlight back into space, “he mentioned as an example.
Combination of technologies
“For the first time, we have the technology necessary to carry out very high resolution climate models, to jump to the speed of light and predict changes in the extreme regional climate for decades to come, “said the manager.
This goal, he stated, can be achieved combining three technologies: accelerated computing with the use of graphics processing units (GPUs); deep learning and advances in neural networks with application to physics; and supercomputers with artificial intelligence algorithms.
Through the combined use of these technologies, NVIDIA will build “the supercomputer most powerful in the world dedicated to predicting climate change, “concluded Huang.