Research and Supercomputing Visitor Program

The Research and Supercomputing Visitor Program (RSVP) is designed to bring university faculty, researchers, and students to NCAR to foster collaboration with CISL staff and to provide training opportunities for underrepresented groups. The program pays for travel and living expenses for stays of up to three months.

Aerosol optical thickness
Remotely sensed aerosol optical thickness for Fall 2014 over the Red Sea (image at right shows detail of box in image at left). The goal is to separate a smooth spatial signal from this retrieved data product. The aerosol (fine particles) concentration is important for determining how much radiation reaches the surface and what absorbed by the atmosphere. These data are used by Dr. Joseph Guiness as a example of geophysical, spatial observations on a regular grid but having an irregular boundary. The challenge is to exploit the grid structure for fast computation but also to adjust the boundaries to avoid artifacts that are common if edge effects are ignored. Dr. Guiness’s approach for handling boundaries is also valuable for the multi-resolution spatial techniques developed in IMAGe.

Joseph Guiness
Joseph Guiness, Assistant professor in the Department of Statistics, North Carolina State University was an RSVP visiting scientist collaborating with CISL staff on the statistical compression of climate model output and also on the analysis of large spatial data sets. During his stay he also spoke as part of the IMAGe triple crown, an afternoon symposium on statistics and the geosciences.

These extended visits help establish stronger relationships that lead to long-term collaborations.

For many visitors, this program represents a unique opportunity to interact with CISL and NCAR scientists and staff on topics ranging from high-performance computing and Earth System modeling to applied mathematics and statistics.

This program supports CISL’s education imperatives of integrating research and education and broadening participation by being a key component that integrates CISL’s education, outreach, and training efforts.

RSVP has sponsored graduate students, junior faculty, senior faculty, and scientist visitors from around the U.S. and the world.

Visitors in FY2015 included applied mathematicians to work with staff on numerical methods for geophysical models (e.g., new dynamical cores) and also graduate students in statistics to expand their mathematical research by including more focused methods for large geophysical data sets.

Also in FY2015, RSVP partially funded eight EPSCoR students to attend NCL workshops at NCAR.

In addition, CISL used some RSVP funds to attract students from minority-serving and EPSCoR-state institutions to participate in the SEA Conference and Scalable Profiler Workshop.

This program is made possible through NSF Core funding.