The GFDL Global Atmosphere and Land Model AM4.0/LM4.0: 2. Model Description, Sensitivity Studies, and Tuning Strategies

M. Zhao, J. C. Golaz, I. M. Held, H. Guo, V. Balaji, R. Benson, J. H. Chen, X. Chen, L. J. Donner, J. P. Dunne, K. Dunne, J. Durachta, S. M. Fan, S. M. Freidenreich, S. T. Garner, P. Ginoux, L. M. Harris, L. W. Horowitz, J. P. Krasting, A. R. LangenhorstZ. Liang, P. Lin, S. J. Lin, S. L. Malyshev, E. Mason, P. C.D. Milly, Y. Ming, V. Naik, F. Paulot, D. Paynter, P. Phillipps, A. Radhakrishnan, V. Ramaswamy, T. Robinson, D. Schwarzkopf, C. J. Seman, E. Shevliakova, Z. Shen, H. Shin, L. G. Silvers, J. R. Wilson, M. Winton, A. T. Wittenberg, B. Wyman, B. Xiang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

209 Scopus citations


In Part 2 of this two-part paper, documentation is provided of key aspects of a version of the AM4.0/LM4.0 atmosphere/land model that will serve as a base for a new set of climate and Earth system models (CM4 and ESM4) under development at NOAA's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL). The quality of the simulation in AMIP (Atmospheric Model Intercomparison Project) mode has been provided in Part 1. Part 2 provides documentation of key components and some sensitivities to choices of model formulation and values of parameters, highlighting the convection parameterization and orographic gravity wave drag. The approach taken to tune the model's clouds to observations is a particular focal point. Care is taken to describe the extent to which aerosol effective forcing and Cess sensitivity have been tuned through the model development process, both of which are relevant to the ability of the model to simulate the evolution of temperatures over the last century when coupled to an ocean model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)735-769
Number of pages35
JournalJournal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


  • atmospheric variability
  • climate simulation
  • cloud and aerosol effect
  • convection and clouds
  • global atmospheric model
  • global climate model development


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