In brief: Volunteers sought for climate change experiment

A citizen science experiment for weather enthusiasts has been launched by NIWA, in collaboration with researchers from the UK and Australia.

Volunteers are now sought to participate in weather@home ANZ, a project that will enable people to contribute to scientists’ understanding of how climate change might be affecting weather in New Zealand and Australia. All that is needed to take part is a computer and an internet connection.

NIWA climate scientist and weather@home New Zealand programme leader Dr Suzanne Rosier says the aim of the project initially is to improve understanding of how extreme weather conditions such as heatwaves and drought may be changing.

It works by participants volunteering the spare processing power on their computers to crunch weather data from a state-of-the-art global climate model that includes a finely detailed regional model over Australia and New Zealand. Dr Rosier says the computing power harnessed in this way from thousands of volunteers is phenomenal.

“It enables scientists to run these global and regional climate models many thousands of times – far more than would be possible with conventional computing resources.”

To register: weatherathome.net

Climate scientist, Dr Suzanne Rosier. [Dave Allen]