In the face of global warming, IBM launches state-of-the-art weather forecast

IBM announced the launch of a new weather forecasting system for its subsidiary The Weather Company. Using a new supercomputer, it will be able to predict future natural disasters more accurately

As global warming is a growing concern around the globe, IBM has announced the launch, through its subsidiary, The Weather Company, of a new advanced weather forecasting system around the world. Called IBM GRAF, for Global High-Resolution Atmospheric Forecasting System, this system will be supported by a supercomputer powered by IBM Power System and able to provide detailed forecasts worldwide.

A real “democratization of meteorological data” that did not fail to greet the staff of the subsidiary of IBM, which sees in the development of this new system a way to protect the crops of developing countries, to bring more visibility in the short and medium-term to air carriers or to improve the warning systems to the population in countries subject to severe climatic constraints.

We are focused on bringing high-resolution modeling to the masses,” said Kevin Petty, chief of scientific and forecast operations at The Weather Company. “We realized that there is a gap in the world, only a small part of the world had access to it,” regrets the leader, who sees the advent of this new system as a solution to the problems posed by natural and climatic disasters.


A system based on a new supercomputer

And remember that a country like the United States experienced, for the fifth year in a row, no less than 10 meteorological disasters each causing losses of at least $ 1 billion in 2019. But there is worse. The World Bank has reported that flooding caused 225,000 deaths and more than $ 1.6 trillion in economic damage between 1980 and 2016, according to another example reported by IBM’s management.

To improve predictions, the GRAF system can predict weather conditions up to 12 hours in advance with details and update forecasts six to 12 times more than current modeling. IBM GRAF can also provide conditions up to 3 square kilometers,

IBM’s GRAF is the result of a collaboration between The Weather Company and the National Center for Atmospheric Research, which has an open-source model. IBM GRAF runs on an IBM Power9 supercomputer and CPUs and GPUs optimized for artificial intelligence and high-performance computing. To do this, the system put in place by IBM relies in particular on a new supercomputer called Dyeus.

Based in Raleigh, North Carolina, it takes 10 terabytes of weather observations every day, based on factors such as humidity, atmospheric pressure, temperature, speed, and temperature. wind direction. On this basis, it performs about 2 trillion calculations per second on this data, IBM management said. It remains to be hoped that this new system will improve weather forecasts, particularly in some African or Asian countries highly dependent on agriculture.

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