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NOAA GFDL: Will the Wet Get Wetter and the Dry Drier? (1901-2100)
Entry ID: GFDL_CM2_1_PrecipitationModel1901-2100

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Abstract: This animation depicts the time evolution of five-year averages of annual precipitation as simulated in the GFDL CM2.1 model for the period 2000 to 2100. Rather than mapping rainfall amounts in units of inches or millimeters, we have chosen to bin the values at each model grid point into five categories (indicated by the five colors in the color bar at the bottom of the plot).

The categories were calculated as follows. After computing five year running averages of annual precipitation for each GFDL CM2.1 model grid point, the 1901-2000 period was analyzed. For each model grid point the maximum and minimum values for the 20th century were noted. Also, at each grid point, the individual 20th century five year rainfall values were ranked in order from driest to wettest, and then divided into three groups. Rainfall amounts falling in the driest third are designated below nomal (light tan), the wettest third are categorized as above normal (pale blue-green), and the middle third as near normal (off white). By definition these three middle colors will be the only ones would appear in maps the modeled 1901 to 2000 period.

After 2000, when a five year precipitation average is less than any of the one hundred five year running averages simulated for the 20th century, that point and time is classified as drier than the 20th century (saddle brown). Similarly, when a five year rainfall value is greater than any simulated for that grid point during 1901-2000 period, it is labelled wetter than the 20th century (darker blue-green).

These animations were produced using the output of the CM2.1 "H2" historical experiment for the 1901-2000 time period and the CM2.1 SRES A1B run for the 2001-2100 period.

credit: NOAA/GFDL

Related URL
Description: 2 page research summary

Geographic Coverage
 N: 90.0 S: -90.0  E: 180.0  W: -180.0

Data Set Citation
Dataset Originator/Creator: Keith Dixon
Dataset Title: Will the Wet Get Wetter and the Dry Drier?
Dataset Publisher: NOAA/GFDL
Online Resource:

Temporal Coverage
Start Date: 1901-01-01
Stop Date: 2100-12-31

Location Keywords

Science Keywords

ISO Topic Category

Climate Diagnostics

Data Center
NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, U.S. Department of Commerce    [Information]
Data Center URL:

Data Center Personnel
Phone: 609-452-6574
Fax: 609-987-5063
Email: Keith.Dixon at
Contact Address:
City: 201 Forrestal Road Princeton
Province or State: NJ
Postal Code: 08540-6649
Country: USA

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IPCC ... (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) (2007): Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis, Summary for Policymakers. (published online 2 Feb 2007 at

Knutson, et al., (2006): Assessment of Twentieth Century Regional Surface Temperature Trends using the GFDL CM2 Coupled Models, Journal of Climate, Vol. 19, No. 9, pages 1624-1651.

Held, et al., (2005): Simulation of Sahel drought in the 20th and 21st centuries. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 102, No. 50, page 17891-17896.

Held and Soden, (2006): Robust responses of the hydrological cycle to global warming, Journal of Climate, Vo. 19, No. 21, pages 5686-5699

Lau, et al. (2006): Attribution of Atmospheric Variations in the 1997-2003 Period to SST Anomalies in the Pacific and Indian Ocean Basins, of Climate, Vol. 19, No. 15, pages 3607-3628.

Lu, et al. (2007): Expansion of the Hadley Cell under global warming, Geophys. Res. Lett,. Vol. 34, L06805, doi:10.1029/2006GL028443.

Creation and Review Dates
DIF Creation Date: 2010-09-27
Last DIF Revision Date: 2010-09-27

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