CMIP6 > Getting Started > Overview

For a practical guide to creating CMIP6 documentation, see the ES-DOC how-to guide.

Since 1995, the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) has coordinated climate model experiments involving multiple international modelling teams. This has led to a better understanding of past, present, and future climate, and CMIP model experiments have routinely been the basis for future climate change assessments made by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The sixth phase of the CMIP process (CMIP6) consists of a few common experiments, the DECK (Diagnostic, Evaluation and Characterisation of Klima) and CMIP6 historical simulations (1850-near present), and an ensemble of CMIP-Endorsed Model Intercomparison Projects (MIPs). Further information about the CMIP6 project can be found here and in the special edition of Geoscientific Model Development: Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 6 (CMIP6) Experimental Design and Organization.

Documentation Workflow

WGCM and the WIP have tasked ES-DOC with documenting all aspects of CMIP6. Building on CIM concepts, the following documents (in bold) are created for the CMIP6 Project, as illustrated on the figure below. A Simulation is a run of a configured Model which has Conformance to the numerical requirements of an Experiment, runs on a Machine with an HPC Performance and produces output Datasets (archived on ESGF). An Ensemble is a set of Simulations whose Axis Members describe how the simulations differ. A Party describes a person or organization involved in the modeling process and a published reference is recorded in a Citation. Datasets may be associated with Errata if any problems are discovered after publication to ESGF.