Saumya Malik ’24
Can We Predict Primary Production in the Ocean?
My project aimed to quantify the predictability of multiple biogeochemical drivers of the ocean ecosystem. One driver that I focused on is net primary production, which is the amount of biomass or carbon produced by primary producers per unit area and time; this is estimated by subtracting plant respiratory costs from gross primary productivity or total photosynthesis. Quantifying the predictability of these drivers allows stakeholders like fisheries to have a better understanding of forecasting capabilities and thus improve their management. My work involved analyzing the data from a new set of simulation experiments run on the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory’s Earth System Model. I wrote code in the program Python to perform calculations of metrics like prognostic potential predictability (PPP) on 300 years’ worth of simulation data. I produced many plots that visualize the PPP of multiple variables in different ways — taking averages over regions and globally, looking at individual grid points over time, and making animations of global maps over time. By the end of the project, I was able to quantify the predictability of many variables and I gained an understanding of the many interesting ways of looking at predictability, which was a fascinating realization for me.
Climate and Environmental Science
Deutsch Research Group, Department of Geosciences, Princeton University - Princeton, New Jersey
Curtis Deutsch, Professor of Geosciences and the High Meadows Environmental Institute; Graeme MacGilchrist, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Program in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences