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The environment research area

The environment research area is part of the MODEST Challenge. It lies at the crossroads of transverse axes “Data assimilation and optimization” and “Uncertainties“.

Within this axis, CERFACS teams conduct scientific studies in various fields of geosciences. Researchers and engineers develop modeling tools,  implement data assimilation methods, run coupled models (multi-physical and / or multi-dimensional) and study the sources of uncertainty on systems. One goal is to apply this research in operational systems in a national and international context.

The methods of applied mathematics used here,  such as coupling or data assimilation,  are at the center of research works in the fields of oceanography, atmospheric chemistry, hydrology and forest fires.

Hydrology and hydraulics

Flood forecasting is a major natural hazard for the safety of goods and people. Actors in risk management and stakeholders in water resource management feature modeling tools and in situ observation network to simulate the flow dynamics. The capabilities of hydrological and hydrodynamic models are limited by several factors of uncertainty related to the description of the bathymetry / topography, hydraulic and hydrological parameters, or the terms of forcings such as hydrological flows and rainfall. These uncertainties can be reduced through data assimilation (in-situ and satellite), as implemented in the DAMP platform (Data Assimilation with MASCARET Platform).

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Forest fires

Predicting the behavior of a large-scale fire depends on a semi-empirical modeling of the propagation of a front (i.e. the interface between burned and unburned areas) involving the vegetation data description, geomorphology and meteorology, however tainted by various sources of error. CERFACS develops the ensemble data assimilation system  FIREFLY to sequentially correct the fire front parameters and position, and thus improve the predictive ability of the propagation models over the acquisition of observations on the front position.

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Tribute to Françoise Chatelin

Brigitte Yzel |  23 July 2021

  Tribute to Françoise CHATELIN   Virtual & Face to Face event @ Cerfacs 14 October 2021, CERFACS, Toulouse (France) 2 pm - 6.30 pm   Cerfacs is organizing a half scientific day on Thursday October 14, 2021 in tribute to Françoise Chatelin who left us prematurely on May 14, 2020   After graduating from the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris (1960-63), and her PhD in Mathematics at Grenoble University (1971) , Françoise Chatelin led with worldwide recognition her research in many areas, from spectral theory for linear operators in Banach spaces and finite precision to Dickson algebras. Professor Chatelin taught at the Universities Grenoble 2 - Pierre Mendès-France and Paris 9 - Dauphine before moving to Toulouse in 1996. She became Emeritus Professor in 2015. She was a visiting researcher at Berkeley and Stanford Universities, IBM San Jose (Ca) and Yorktown Heights (NY). For almost a decade, she was a scientific manager in Industry (in charge of intensive computing) first at the Centre Scientifique IBM France in Paris (1985 -1992) and then in the Central Research Lab of Thales (known as Thomson-CSF at that time) near Paris (1992-95). Françoise Chatelin was Head of the Qualitative Computing group at the Centre Européen de Recherche et de Formation Avancée en Calcul Scientifique (Cerfacs) in Toulouse, France. Professor Chatelin has authored four books; the first three are now classic references available from SIAM. Her second book Valeurs Propres de Matrices (Masson, Paris, 1988) has received the IBM - France prize for « Best Scientific and technical publication 1988 ». Beyond her scientific contribution, Françoise Chatelin played a structuring role on research at CERFACS through multiple thesis on innovative topics. This event is devoted to the human and scientific tribute of her life. As a faithful image of the active and passionate woman that...Read more

CERFACS is involved in the NextSim project

CERFACS |  19 July 2021

The primary objective is to increase the capabilities of Computational Fluid Dynamics tools on extreme-scale parallel computing platforms for aeronautical design. The Kick-Off Meeting took place on 12 March 2021. This project has received funding from the European High-Performance Computing Joint Undertaking (JU) under grant agreement N° 956104. The JU receives support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme and Spain, France, Germany. For more information, please visit  EuroHPC website : Project webpage :Read more