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Community Earth System Model (CESM2)

CESM2 is a fully-coupled, community, global climate model that provides state-of-the-art computer simulations of the Earth's past, present, and future climate states. It has seven different components: atmosphere, ocean, river run off, sea ice, land ice, waves and adaptive river transport.


CESM is not part of the officially supported software on ARCHER2. While the ARCHER2 service desk is able to provide support for basic use of this software (e.g. access to software, writing job submission scripts) it does not generally provide detailed technical support for the software and you may be directed to seek support from other places if the service desk cannot answer the questions.

CESM 2.1.3

At the time of writing, CESM 2.1.3 is the latest scientifically verified version of the model.

Setting up CESM 2.1.3 on ARCHER2

Due to the nature of CESM2, there is not a centrally installed version of the program available on ARCHER2. Instead, users download their own copy of the program and make use of ARCHER2-specific configurations that have been rigorously tested.

The setup process has been streamlined on ARCHER2 and can be carried out by following the instructions on the ARCHER2 CESM2.1.3 setup page

Using CESM 2.1.3 on ARCHER2

A quickstart guide for running a simple coupled case of CESM 2.1.3 on ARCHER2 can be found here. It should be noted that this is only a quickstart guide with a focus on the way that CESM 2.1.3 should be run specifically on ARCHER2, and is not intended to replace the larger CESM or CIME documentation linked to below.


If this is your first time running CESM2, it is highly recommended that you consult both the CIME documentation and the NCAR CESM pages for the version used in CESM 2.1.3, paying particular attention to the pages on Basic Usage of CIME which gives detailed description of the basic commands needed to get a model running.

Compsets and Configurations

CESM2 allows simulations to be carried out using a very wide range of configurations. If you are new to CESM2 it is highly recommended that, unless you are running a case you are already familiar with, you consult the CESM2.1 Configurations page. You can also see a list of the defined compsets already available on the component set definitions page. More information about configurations, grids and compsets can be found on the CESM2 Configurations and Grids page, which includes links to the configuration settings of the different components.