The Snow Model Intercomparison Project (SnowMIP)
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The Snow Model Intercomparison Project (SnowMIP). Richard Essery School of GeoSciences University of Edinburgh, UK. Arctic System Model Workshop III, Montréal, 16 – 17 July 2009.

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The Snow Model Intercomparison Project (SnowMIP)

Richard Essery

School of GeoSciences

University of Edinburgh, UK

Arctic System Model Workshop III, Montréal, 16 – 17 July 2009


Nuria Altimir, Kostas Andreadis, Ian Baker, Alan Barr, Paul Bartlett,Eric Bazile, Aaron Boone, Ross Brown, Yong-Jiu Dai, Huiping Deng,Hervé Douville, Emanuel Dutra, Kelly Elder, Chad Ellis, Pierre Etchevers,Xia Feng, Alberto Fernandez, Charles Fierz, Alexander Gelfan,Angus Goodbody, Yeugeniy Gusev, David Gustafsson, Rob Hellström,Yukiko Hirabayashi, Tomoyoshi Hirota, Tobias Jonas, Rachel Jordan,Victor Koren, Eva Kowalczyk, Anna Kuragina, Yves Lejeune,Dennis Lettenmaier, Wei-Ping Li, Charlie Luce, Eric Martin, Olga Nasonova,John Pomeroy, Jukka Pumpanen, David Pyles, Nick Rutter,Patrick Samuelsson, Melody Sandells, Gerd Schädler, Adam Schlosser,Andrey Shmakin, Tatiana Smirnova, Manfred Stähli, Reto Stöckli,Ulrich Strasser, Hua Su, Kazuyoshi Suzuki, Kumiko Takata, Kenji Tanaka,Erin Thompson, Timo Vesala, Pedro Viterbo, Andrew Wiltshire, Kun Xia,Yongkang Xue, Takeshi Yamazaki, Zong-Liang Yang

Arctic System Model Workshop III, Montréal, 16 – 17 July 2009


SnowMIP Sites Bartlett,

● SnowMIP1

Col de Porte (45.3ºN, 5.8ºE)

Goose Bay (53.3ºN, 60.4ºW)

Sleepers River (44.5ºN, 72.2ºW)

Weissfluhjoch (46.8ºN, 9.8ºE)

24 models

● SnowMIP2

Alptal (47.3ºN, 8.7ºE)

BERMS (53.6ºN, 104.4ºW)

Fraser (39.5ºN, 105.5ºW)

Hitsujigaoka (42.6ºN, 141.2ºE)

Hyytiälä (61.5ºN, 24.2ºE)

33 models



Forests and Snow Bartlett,

Forests (University of Maryland global land cover classification) and

January 2005 snow cover (NSIDC) – overlap in red

“Large discrepancies remain in albedo for forested areas under snowy conditions

due to difficulties in determining the extent of masking of snow by vegetation”

IPCC AR4


SnowMIP2 Sites Bartlett,

BERMS, Saskatchewan, Canada

Alptal, Switzerland

Fraser, Colorado, USA

Hyytiälä, Finland

Hitsujigaoka , Japan











Limitations Bartlett,

  • Not Arctic!

  • Point scales

  • Uncoupled

  • Uncertainty in driving and evaluation data

  • Subjective parameter choices

  • There is no “best” model

  • Essery, RLH, and 8 others, 2009. SnowMIP2: An evaluation of forest snow

  • process simulations. Bull. Amer. Meteorol. Soc., doi: 10.1175/2009BAMS2629.1

  • Rutter, N, and 50 others, 2009: Evaluation of forest snow processes models

  • (SnowMIP2). J. Geophys. Res.–Atmos., doi:10.1029/2008JD011063.


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