Faster Verbundstreffen Karlsruhe

by Julian Asbaeck

Within WarmWorld’s project structure, the Faster module’s central aim is to facilitate the release of ICON-Consolidated: a free and open source software implementation of the fully coupled ICON system that guarantees its scalable development. Faster also assumes responsibility to deliver a coupled ICON model configuration that will run with a simulation throughput of >0.5 SYPD at a grid resolution of 2.5km or finer.

The recent meeting in Karlsruhe, kindly hosted by Terry Cojean and Gholamali Hoshyaripour at KIT, on the 20th and 21st of November 2023, presented a welcome opportunity to assess current progress on Faster’s central aims. Since a meeting of the full ICON-consolidated initiative was scheduled for the following days, the Faster meeting was opened to all ICON developers to present developments from Faster and receive valuable feedback.

With almost a year between WarmWorld’s kickoff and this week’s meeting, Hendryk Bockelmann opened with a recap of the projects early days and its initial aims. The development of ICON into an open, scalable and modularized code base termed ICON-C remains the overarching target of Faster. Looking back on a year of concerted efforts, parts of Faster’s targets have gone a far way: to date, an open version of ICON for next generation HPC is close to being in existence, and soon first experiments exploring different programming paradigms will follow suit. At the same time, shortcomings in identifying standard benchmarks tests and defining a specific model configuration of ICON were not only raised in Hendryk Bockelman’s presentation, but resonated throughout many discussions over the two days.

On a similar note, Claudia Frauen, WarmWorld’s Chief Technologist, sketched Faster’s role within WarmWorld and urged for an even closer engagement between the three modules. Specifically, determining the model configuration of ICON inside Faster needs to factor in developments of model physics occurring inside Better. This point was expanded upon in Julia Duras’ presentation, who outlined the need to develop a project setup that can test the scientific validity of the ICON code, observe model performance on implementation sites, and set a scientific baseline for developments in Better. Altogether, the evaluation of standards, benchmarks and uniform protocols for progress assessment are geared toward defining an ICON configuration for WarmWorld.

While all presentations provided crucial directives, large parts of the meeting where structured by collective discussions turning to the technical hurdles at hand. In anticipation of the meeting on ICON development beyond WarmWorld, focus lay on concrete problem sets such as the memory manager and pushing for the development of a broader testing scheme.

For the upcoming months we look forward to providing detailed insights into some activity groups in the form of blogposts. Stay tuned to learn more!