Research @ LEAP


LEAP research aims to reduce errors in near-future climate projections by developing novel machine learning (ML) algorithms which will better extrapolate by including domain and causal knowledge, while aggressively leveraging the wealth of recent datasets.  

Metrics for high quality data

Research Focus

LEAP will focus on hybridizing ML by integrating physical knowledge for implementation with the open-source Community Earth System Model (CESM) by:

  1. Reducing the existing model structural errors related to the lack of comprehension of the process at play (e.g., clouds + microphysics);
  2. Optimally estimating the model parameters using a Bayesian approach; and
  3. Developing new observational products which will be used to evaluate the CESM skill.

Research Impacts

The Problem
Climate scientists and modelers struggle to fully integrate the wealth of existing datasets into their models, while ML algorithms have been good at replacing and interpolating, but less targeted at extrapolating.
Our Solution
LEAP’s research triggers a significant advancement for data science applied to physical problems, by incorporating physics into ML algorithms to develop a next-generation CESM for better generalization and extrapolation, while optimally using the wealth of data available to climate science. Our scientists merge physical modeling with ML across a “Knowledge-Data Continuum,” benefiting both scientific communities by providing a template for other climate modeling centers, as well as offering a more accurate approach to predicting the future of our climate.
The Problem
Compounding historical shortcomings in climate science and computing capacities that limit the accuracy of climate projections, inaccessibility to trustworthy, relevant, and accurate climate-related information makes it challenging for communities to optimally adapt and develop resiliency in the face of climate change.
Our Solution
By pursuing deep collaboration and engagement between climate data scientists, national research labs, public and private stakeholders, and other partners, LEAP will develop tailored and relevant climate-related information that will provide improved climate projections 10 to 40 years into the future. Communicated in ways that are more digestible and relevant, this information will benefit industry, government, and local communities with increased mitigation knowledge, more precise risk quantification, and the ability to better adapt to climate change to improve life for generations to come.