2nd SVALI summer school on Earth System Models and Ice Models
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2nd SVALI summer school on Earth System Models and Ice Models

Group photo of SVALI summer school 2011

Picture of the previous summer school

SVALI logo


The Nordic Centre of Excellence, SVALI (Stability and Variations of Arctic Land Ice) will hold its second summer school on the topic of Glaciology and Earth System Models. The school is a joint effort by the SVALI consortium and CSC.


The school takes place at Nuuksio National Park in Espoo, Finland. It is conveniently located in the Helsinki metropolitan area. The near vicinity of the capital city is not visible, however - the venue is in a nature preservation area that resembles Finland's nature in its best.


School starts on Monday 13 May, 2013 and departure is on Friday 24 May, 2013. The two weeks between those are filled with high-quality lectures, sports & leisure activities and nice time together. Be warned that at this time of the year, sun will not set almost at all!

To Whom?

The school is aimed for graduate students up to senior scientists who want to get insight into applications in Earth system models and ice flow models.


The course is rather application/computation oriented, thus some theoretical background in one of those disciplines would be beneficial. Some basic skills to operate a computer will be assumed.  Upon request, the school will contain a short introduction in UNIX type of environments.


The participants will get a certificate from the school that contains a recommendation to your university for granting 5 credits (ECTS) for the school.


Accommodation takes place in nice 1-2 person rooms with shared shower and toilet. Linen and towels will be provided.


The summer school this year will concentrate on the following scientific question:

"Can we quantify the average ice loss/gain of Svalbard glaciers connected to climate change despite the strong temporal variation due to surge behaviour?"

In order to address this question, we will cover the theory, learn to process and interpret observational data (from various Svalbard glaciers), and use ice flow modeling (Elmer/Ice).

The outcome of the summer school will be a SVALI publication, co-authored by all participants.

Following topics will be covered:

  • Basic introduction to UNIX/Linux, and computational  data processing techniques (shell, AWK, Python)
  • Introduction to Earth system modeling
  • Basic concept to approach simulation uncertainties
  • Introduction into glaciological modeling
  • Snow and ice thermodynamics and surface energy budget
  • Atmospheric boundary layer over snow and ice
  • Large-scale interaction between cryosphere and atmosphere
  • Treatment of snow in climate models
  • Atmospheric radiative transfer in climate models
  • Glacier records of Svalbard (for project work)
  • Field measurements of surface mass balance
  • Project work on 2D/3D full Stokes glacier flow models and observational data

For more information on the summer school, contact Thomas Zwinger (thomas[dot]zwinger[at]csc[dot]fi)

Date: 13.05.2013 10:00 - 24.05.2013 12:00
Location: Solvalla
Language: English
Lecturers: Heikki Järvinen (FMI/UoH), Jack Kohler (NPI), Juha Lento (CSC), Martti Louhivuori (CSC), Petri Räisänen (FMI), Timo Vihma (FMI), Thomas Zwinger (CSC) (as confirmed by now, in alphabetical order)
Price: 1300 EUR
The deadline for binding registrations is April 5, 2013. The fee includes lodging, four meals per day, the banquets, transportation to the airport at the last day, course materials, instructed sports activities and related equipment.


Registration has expired 05.04.2013 16:00
There will be about 20 seats. Preference is given to students and scientists from within the SVALI consortium and from a partner Nordic Centre of Excellence (CRAICC or DEFROST). The other participants will be selected by a decision process within the SVALI graduate school board that takes into account the order of registration, background etc.. The "invoice reference number" in the registration form is mainly for the electronic accounting system used in Finnish universities. If you do not have or need such a reference, put a dash (-) on the field (it does not accept to be left empty).

Additional information

We will provide the needed material including computers to work on. For persons who will bring their own laptop, instructions on the prerequisites will be made public well in advance of the summer school.