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Expired Projects


The C3Grid project(Collaborative Climate Community Data and Processing Grid) aims to develop tools, especially for the climate community, for easy access and searches on climatologic data such as modeling results and observations.
The user will be able to uniformly access climate data of the paticipating data archives (to which belong amongst others the world data centres, the German Weather Service DWD and several  institutions of climate sciences).

With the deployment of standardized working procedures  („workflows“) available through C3Grid, in which FUB is taking part, the user will effectivly be supported during his data processing.

To ensure a sustainable collaboration with the earth system sciences, the department of Meteorology of FUB also supports the efforts to create a community of C3Grid users within climate and earth system scientists to benefit the scientific progress.


Contact persons:

Prof. Uwe Ulbrich
Dr. Ingo Kirchner

Dipl. Met. Heike Kupfer


CIRCE is an integrated project funded within the 6th EU framework programme.

The main objectives of CIRCE are to predict and to quantify thephysical impacts of climate change in the Mediterranean, and to assess the most influential consequences for the society and economy of the population of the region. Possible adaptation and mitigation strategies are identified in collaboration with regional stakeholders. CIRCE is an inter-disciplinary project involving researchers from 65 partner institutions including physical, natural and social sciences. 

The contribution of the Freie Universität Berlin for the CIRCE project is the investigation of cyclones affecting the Mediterranean region. Extreme cyclones that are associated with strong winds or precipitation are of special interest for the Mediterranean environment. Trends and variability of cyclone activity under current climate conditions are analysed using reanalysis data. The influence of large-scale teleconnection patterns on the activity of extreme and non-extreme cyclones is explored. Changes in these variables are investigated using climate model simulations forced with anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions scenarios.


Contact persons:

Prof. Dr. Uwe Ulbrich
Dr. Gregor Leckebusch
Dr. Katrin Nissen



Ensemble-based Predictions of Climate Changes and their Impacts

The ENSEMBLES project aims to:

  • Develop an ensemble prediction system for climate change based on the principal state-of-the-art, high resolution, global and regional Earth System models developed in Europe, validated against quality controlled, high resolution gridded datasets for Europe, to produce for the first time, an objective probabilistic estimate of uncertainty in future climate at the seasonal to decadal and longer timescales

  • Quantify and reduce the uncertainty in the representation of physical, chemical, biological and human-related feedbacks in the Earth System (including water resource, land use, and air quality issues, and carbon cycle feedbacks)

  • Maximise the exploitation of the results by linking the outputs of the ensemble prediction system to a range of applications, including agriculture, health, food security, energy, water resources, insurance and weather risk management

The contributions of working group CLIDIA to the ENSEMBLES project include validation and analyses of the multi-model ensemble with respect to extreme wind events, associated atmospheric circulation patterns and cyclone tracks in the simulations of recent and future climate. Further on, an application of impact modelling is performed with respect to storm loss potentials. Focus is on the estimation of measures of uncertainty.


Contact persons:

Prof. Uwe Ulbrich
Dr. Gregor Leckebusch
Markus Donat


Project: Earth Rotation and Global Dynamic Processes

The research unit Earth Rotation and Global Dynamic Processes is funded by the German Research Foundation DFG (FOR 584, 2006–2012). 10 projects investigate various complementary aspects of the Earth's rotation taking into account interactions and feedbacks between various sub-systems of the Earth.

Our project P10

Long-term ERP time series as indicators for global climate variability and climate change (ERP-CLIVAR)

studies whether variations in Earth rotation parameters (ERPs) such as length-of day (LOD) and polar motion (PM) can be used as climate indicators. On interannual time scales the coupled ocean-atmosphere phenomenon El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) affects variations in LOD and PM differently in amplitude and magnitude. Considering the different effect of atmosphere and ocean on LOD and PM, our analyses focus on relations between LOD - atmosphere while interaction between PM and ocean are studied by our co-partner (see also for more details www.erdrotation.de, project 10).

Our study investigates for selected ENSO episodes anomalies of spatial patterns of parameters associated with atmosphere and ocean (large-scale circulation, climate indices, sea surface temperatures) and relates them to LOD and PM variability.  Specific physical feedback mechanism are associated to the varying effect of individual El Niño episodes on LOD that is further explored.

Corresponding analyses are conducted on modelled ERPs such as the relative angular momentum (AAM) and ocean angular momentum (OAM) using ERA40 reanalysis, the ocean model OMCT, and the coupled ocean-atmospheric model ECHAM5-OM1 to obtain Earth rotation parameters undisturbed by core-mantle activities, and to study Earth rotational variations under climate variability and change.


Selected activities and current information:

Progress report (P10, P2) PDF

Press information: April 21, 2009 - Discovery News reports on P10 research


Picture: The geographical distribution of the mean regression coefficients between observed LOD and AAM indicates a strong relation between interannual variations of LOD and the subtropical jet streams (~30°). LOD is regressed upon spatial fields of AAM for all  months of the 1982/83 and 1997/98 El Niños.





Contact persons:

Prof. Uwe Ulbrich

Dr. Gregor Leckebusch

Dr. Peter Nevir

Elfrun Lehmann


official Homepage DWD

NinJo - Ein meteorologisches Graphiksystem

NinJo ist das neue Grafikvisualisierungssystem für alle Arten meteorologischer Daten. Entwickelt vom Deutschen Wetterdienst, dem Geoinformationsdienst der Bundeswehr und den Wetterdinsten der Schweiz, Dänemark und Kanadas ist es ein internationales Projekt, das an der FU Berlin erstmals Einzug in eine Universitäre Einrichtung und damit auch in die wissenschaftliche Forschung und Lehre erhalten hat. Der Schwerpunkt dersynoptischen Ausbildung der Studenten in Berlin wird mit NinJo auf modernem Wege fortgeführt. Die Studierenden erhalten damit eine auf dem neuesten Stand der Technik stehende, aktuelle und praxisnahe Ausbildung zum Meteorologen. Dafür wurde im „Wetterturm“ des Instituts der Computerraum mit NinJo kompatiblen Rechnern ausgestattet. Die erforderlichen Daten werden über 2 Server vom Universitäts-Rechenzentrum ZEDAT geholt, das zentral für alle deutschen meteorologischen Universitätsinstitute den Datenstrom vom DWD empfängt und speichert.

In der Forschung und Lehre wird NinJo am Institut zur Wetteranalyse und Vorhersage genutzt, insbesondere auch in der praktischen Arbeit an der WMO-Wetterstation des Instituts. Auch die Berliner Wetterkarte erhält die für die Erstellung des täglichen Materials erforderlichen Daten. Mit dem Grafikeditor werden thematische Karten erzeugt. Es ist damit zum Beispiel problemlos, aktuelle Daten auf einem detaillierten geografischen Hintergrund mit Flüssen und Ländergrenzen übereinander zu legen oder in Fenstern nebeneinander darzustellen, und die Darstellungen in unterschiedlichen Zeiträumen mit verschiedenen Zeitschritten zu animieren. Der Meteorologe kann darüber hinaus computergestützte Vorhersagedaten manuell modifizieren, wenn er aufgrund aktuellerer Daten eine andere Einschätzung hat. So ist insbesondere im Bereich der Kurzfristvorhersage eine Qualitätssteigerung zu erzielen. Ebenso lassen sich zur Verbesserung von Wetterwarnungen mögliche Überschreitungen von Schwellenwerten meteorologischer Parameter in den Messwerten oder in den Modellprognosewerten überwachen.

Dies ist aber nur ein kleiner Teil der Fähigkeiten von NinJo, welches speziell darauf ausgelegt ist die stetig anwachsenden Datenmengen in der Meteorologie, angefangen bei Beobachtungen, über Radar- und Satellitendaten hin zu den verschiedenen Modelldaten, zu verarbeiten und dem Meteorologen zur Verfügung zu stellen.

Contact persons:

Prof. Uwe Ulbrich
Dr. Gregor Leckebusch
Nico Becker


Extreme convective events such as severe storms, hail or heavy precipitation endanger both human life and considerable amounts of material assets. For Germany alone, the MunichRe reports damages of 1 to 2 Billion € each year. Despite this there are gaps in the understanding of economic and climatological risk, especially lacking are estimations for the the risk of a changing climate in the near future up to 2030.

Sectors of the economy that are directly influenced by weather, such as insurances, air traffic, and water management but also weather services itself developing their own storm warnings, have a pressing need for regional risk assessments and methods to predict extreme convective events. The adjustment of structure and building standards to trends for extreme weather is also of great importance to the economy. Of the possible benefiters of this project the Munich Airport and the Munich Re have been exemplarily chosen.

In close cooperation with these users, RegioExAKT looks into the hydro-meteorological and insurance relevant extreme events caused by regional climate change, keeping the time dependent development of the vulnerability in mind. This enables insurances and construction companies to adapt to the changing climate conditions.

Other then meteorological models (global and regional climate, weather forecasts) and socio-economic approaches, highly developed remote sensing and in situ observation methods are used to answer the questions. The informing of other potential users, the DWD, the public and the decision makers will ensure the dissemination and realization of the project.

FUB specific contribution:

The core task of the Freie Universität Berlin in this project is to estimate the probability of occurrence and intensity of potential extreme events in relation to current conditions and anthropogenic climate change. The possibility of using the newly developed energy index (DSI) to predict extreme events will be looked into based on the data of observed extreme events and the large scale meteorological situation at the time of occurrence. To do so, typical pre-event conditions and specific weather situations are extracted from the observed data and statistically linked to the intensity and frequency of the events. The results are then applied to climate simulations. With the aid of the DSI as a local indicator for extreme events and their pre-event conditions, a prediction algorithm shall be developed to improve the forecast quality of meteorological extreme events for southern Germany.

Contact Persons:

Prof. Uwe Ulbrich
Dr. Gregor Leckebusch
Anne Matthies

Thomas Schartner


The Shift of Southern Hemisphere Storminess under Anthropogenic Climate Change around Antarctica and its Impacts - "SACAI"

The project is part of the "Schwerpunktprogramm 1158 (SPP 1158)": "Bereich Infrastruktur - Antarktisforschung mit vergleichenden Untersuchungen in arktischen Eisgebieten"

The proposal aims at the investigation of southern hemisphere cyclone development, its variability and extremes under present climate conditions, its possible shift under anthropogenic forcing conditions, and its impacts on the climatic system of Antarctica. By means of a multi-model ensemble the southern hemisphere cyclone development towards the end of this century will be estimated and measures of uncertainty will be deduced. This will include a special focus on
extreme cyclones. Cyclone systems are, by their related transient eddies, responsible for freshwater fluxes into Antarctica, and thus contribute to the transmission of any global climate change signature towardsAntarctica. Especially, the following questions will be addressed: What are the characteristics of SH cyclone and storm development under anthropogenic climate change and what is the range of expected changes from the perspective of state-of-the-art climate models? What are the impacts on the Antarctic climate system caused by a shifted of the cyclonic activity over the Southern Ocean under anthropogenic climate change?

Additionally, investigations will be carried out estimating the impact of stratospheric variability on tropospheric and ocean circulations. Therefore, the new state-of-the-art Atmosphere-Ocean Chemistry-Climate Model (AOCCM) ECHAM5-MESSy-O will be performed and analysed. The specific model configuration allows to simulate the feedback between the Antarctic atmosphere and the Southern Ocean in a changing climate taking the vertical coupling between
the stratosphere and the troposphere into account, in particular the response of surface climate to the Antarctic ‘ozone hole’ and increasing greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations.

Contact persons are:

Univ. Prof. Dr. Uwe Ulbrich
Dr. Gregor C. Leckebusch