Feeds

Computing network warns of massive climate change

GlobalWarming@home

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The next step in data security

The world could be as much as 11°C hotter inside 50 years, according to the first results from climateprediction.net, an experimental distributed computing network set up to simulate climate change.

The researchers ran more than 50,000 simulations of the potential future climate, based on a doubling of pre-industrial carbon dioxide levels. What they found has surprised them. David Stainforth, from Oxford University, explains that carbon dioxide levels could have a much greater impact on global temperature than previously thought.

The project was designed to find out the possible range of temperature change in the 21st century. At the lower end of the scale, we are looking at over a 2°C increase in temperatures across the planet. At the upper end, things are much more serious, and even if carbon dioxide levels stay as they are now, we could be in for some very noticeable changes in climate.

Project co-ordinator, Dr David Frame, noted that the results have profound implications. "If the real world response were anywhere near the upper end of our range, even today's levels of greenhouse gases could already be dangerously high," he said.

The researchers said that more work is needed to "explore the uncertainties to rule out the possibilities of an extreme temperature rise", according to Wired Magazine.

The project is the largest climate simulation ever and is only possible because of donated spare computer processing power, like the SETI@Home project on which it is based. The network spans 150 countries, and involves around 90,000 computers; participants have simulated over four million model years, and donated over 8,000 years of computing time.

The research is ongoing, so if you want to participate, point your browser here. ®

Related stories

Dutch turn town into supercomputer
Globus Consortium takes grid computing to the office
Home PCs sought in hunt for cancer cure
Man sacked for hunting ET at work

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SCREW YOU, Russia! NASA lobs $6.8bn at Boeing AND SpaceX to run space station taxis
Musk charging nearly half as much as Boeing for crew trips
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Thought that last dinosaur was BIG? This one's bloody ENORMOUS
Weighed several adult elephants, contend boffins
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.