Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center, University of Maryland
Data Center Description
The Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center (ESSIC) is a joint center between the University of Maryland Departments of Meteorology, Geology, Geography, and the Earth Sciences Directorate at the NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. ESSIC also administers the Cooperative Institute for Climate Studies (CICS), which is joint with the NOAA National Satellite, Data, and Information Services (NESDIS) and the NOAA National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP). The goal of ESSIC is to enhance our understanding of how the atmosphere, ocean, land, and biosphere components of the Earth interact as a coupled system and the influence of human activities on this system. This is accomplished via studies of the interaction between the physical climate system (e.g., El Nino) and biogeochemical cycles (e.g., greenhouse gases, changes in land use and cover).
The major research thrusts of the center are studies of Climate Variability and Change, Atmospheric Composition and Processes, the Global Carbon Cycle (including Terrestrial and Marine Ecosystems/Land Use/Cover Change), and the Global Water Cycle. The manner in which this research is accomplished is via analyses of in situ and remotely sensed observations together with component and coupled ocean-atmosphere-land models. Together this provides a foundation for understanding and forecasting changes in the global environment and regional implications. Data assimilation and regional downscaling provide the means by which the observations and models are linked to study the interactions between the physical climate system and biogeochemical cycles from global to regional scales.