Atmospheric Scientist Explains Complex Climate Research Through Animations

Credit: public domain CC0

Climate scientist Elizabeth Barnes uses neural networks and explainable artificial intelligence to answer pressing questions about Earth’s climate. These state-of-the-art machine learning methods help unravel the complexity of the Earth system, but they can be difficult to understand.

Barnes wanted to break these concepts down into a few easy-to-understand videos, so she commissioned an artist to visually communicate her group’s research.

“When you watch these videos, it becomes clear that our work is rooted in the fundamentals of climate science — we’re just using AI as a tool to explore data,” said Barnes, associate professor in the Department of Science. atmospheric.

Barnes used the funds she received when she was shortlisted for the Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering Faculty Excellence Award in 2021 to hire Carrie Van Horn of Heartwood Visuals. Van Horn translated the group’s science into videos covering four topics:

  • Sub-seasonal to decadal forecast
  • Robust and reliable AI for climate science
  • Climate responses and interventions
  • Forced change detection

Each video describes neural networks and explainable AI, and explains how researchers are using AI to tackle each topic.

Barnes’ entire research group was involved in the production. Graduate students and postdoctoral fellows wrote scripts, brainstormed images, recorded audio, and communicated with the artist.

Credit: Elizabeth Barnes

“It was really important to me that these videos were a group effort,” Barnes said. “My group is made up of incredibly creative people, and the videos are 100 times better because everyone was involved.”

Credit: Elizabeth Barnes

Barnes & Noble outsources certain technical services to Nook

More information:
The videos are available online: … u/scicomm?authuser=0

Provided by Colorado State University

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