Success of the UFS requires engaging a wide range of community members in the development and use of UFS code. That code needs to be accessible, understandable, and usable by all community members. Seeking a way to ensure this would always be the case, a UFS community member suggested we subject the code to graduate students’ testing. Thus, the Graduate Student Test (GST) was born.

Since the first GST was published in 2019, we’ve inspired not only graduate students but scientists of all ages, professors, forecasters, undergraduate and high-school students to participate and provide excellent feedback about the usability of our codes. Their experiences changed our thinking and returned great stories about taking on challenges and finding creative solutions to conquer them.

The GST serves to measure how successful the UFS is at opening its development process to the broader community. The test consists of having participants try to quickly get, change and run UFS code, test it for correct operation, and then use standard diagnostic packages to evaluate results.

Are you ready for the challenge? We think you are and want to encourage you to get involved by registering to take our active GSTs now!

The UFS GST assesses how easily a participant can:

  • Get code.
  • Run code.
  • Change code.
  • Test code for correct operation.
  • Evaluate code with standard diagnostic packages.
  • Get documentation, user support, and training.
  • Understand the general structure of a code that is used in operations.

Why call it a “graduate student test?” Because graduate students are the next generation of scientists. They have all the prerequisites to deploy the UFS code and become contributors but may be new to its concepts, acronyms, and assumptions. They are an excellent target test group for ensuring that UFS materials and processes are clear and understandable for everyone who wants to work with the UFS code.

Other target groups include forecasters, weather industry professionals, and students at the undergraduate or even high-school level. In other words, we welcome comments and questions from anyone interested in running the UFS code and in becoming a member of our growing community.

Get involved now in one of the ongoing UFS Graduate Student Tests, listed below.

Available Graduate Student Tests

GST5: UFS Short-Range Weather Application v1.0 three-step experiment including getting started, spatial domain resolution change, and atmospheric physics upgrade – First run the Short-Range Weather (SRW) Application for a 25-km CONUS domain using the GFSv15.2 physics suite. Then rerun the experiment with the same physics suite for a 3-km CONUS domain to assess the resolution-change impact. Finally, rerun the experiment with the same 3-km domain using the next-generation RRFSv1alpha physics suite. Compare the results to assess the impact. Includes a portable workflow. 6 hours allotted.

GST4: UFS Medium-Range Weather Application v1.1 Cloud Condensation Nuclei Experiment – Run the Medium-Range Weather Application for 24 hours, change cloud condensation nucleii namelist parameters, rerun and compare results. Includes a portable workflow. 6 hours allotted.

Completed Graduate Student Tests

GST3: UFS Medium-Range Weather Application v1.0 Cloud Condensation Nuclei Experiment Final GST3 report.

GST2: UFS Weather Model Cloud Condensation Nuclei ExperimentSee responses.

GST1: UFS S2S Prototype SST ExperimentFinal GST1 report.