Research Project

Measuring cloud and aerosol interactions

Improving cloud simulations to reduce climate modelling uncertainties in the NZESM

We now have a better understanding of how sensitive temperature and precipitation are to greenhouse gases, with improvements in the simulation of clouds at Southern high-latitudes. However, the warmer projections they’ve produced have raised questions about whether they’re the result of other newly exposed errors.

Climate models – include the New Zealand Earth System Model (NZESM) – contain biases likely resulting from poor simulations of clouds and how they capture interactions between aerosols and clouds. This project will develop the process understanding required to improve cloud simulations by analysing the treasure trove of previously collected datasets and adding to these with targeted measurement campaigns.

This process understanding will reduce model uncertainties around Aotearoa so climate projections can be both more accurate and robust. This will enable higher quality climate adaptation planning.